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May 16, 2013

Operation Sudden Impact Solves Six ‘Cold Case’ Murders and Leads to Charges Against Nearly 40 Gang Members and Associates Who Operated in Montebello

Filed under: California Defense Attorney, Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:29 am

LOS ANGELES – A task force investigation into gang activities in the City of Montebello has resulted in a series of criminal cases being filed by state and federal prosecutors, including a federal racketeering indictment and charges related to six murders that were unsolved prior to the joint investigation called Operation Sudden Impact.This morning, 10 defendants named in federal indictments and criminal charges filed in Los Angeles Superior Court ere taken into custody by law enforcement authorities. Previously in the investigation, six defendants were charged by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office in murder cases solved during this investigation. As a result of Operation Sudden Impact, a total of 38 gang members and their associates now have been charged by federal and state prosecutors.

The two-year investigation stems from a string of “cold case” murders that led law enforcement to the Southside Montebello criminal street gang and their local rivals. Ultimately, the investigation resulted in six state murder cases, including one charging a gang member who is accused of fatally shooting a man and his 12-year-old son in June 2008, and attempting to murder two other people, who were attending a party where a fight broke out between members of his gang and Southside Montebello.

Operation Sudden Impact was a multi-agency effort of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF); the Montebello Police Department; the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department; and the California

Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Special Services Unit. As a result of the investigation, personnel from these agencies, assisted by law enforcement officials from other state and federal agencies, this morning arrested a total of 10 individuals who were charged in the federal RICO case and other cases filed by the United States Attorney’s Office and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

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12 Los Angeles-Area Residents Accused of Attempting to Bilk Medicare out of $22 Million Arrested as part of Nationwide Crackdown

Filed under: Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:17 am

LOS ANGELES – Twelve Los Angeles-area residents – including California’s second-largest biller for chiropractic services, a physician’s assistant, and owners of durable medical equipment (DME) and ambulance companies – were taken into custody today in relation to seven criminal cases that allege they cumulatively submitted more than $22 million in false billings to Medicare.

The charges filed in Los Angeles are part of a nationwide “takedown” by Medicare Fraud Strike Force operations in eight cities that led to charges against 89 individuals for their alleged participation in schemes to collectively submit about $223 million in fraudulent claims to Medicare (for national press release and all related charging documents, see: http://www.justice.gov/opa/mfsf-pc-docs-2013.html).

The dozen defendants taken into custody are among 13 people charged in Los Angeles in cases that allege health care fraud. The 12 either were arrested this morning or self-surrendered to authorities after learning that they had been charged in federal court. All of those defendants are scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon. A thirteenth defendant is a fugitive.

Dr. Houshang Pavehzadeh, of the Sylmar Physician Medical Group, allegedly billed Medicare more than $1.7 million for chiropractic treatments he never performed.  During the scheme, which ran from 2005 through 2012, Dr. Pavehzadeh, 40, of Agoura Hills, became the second-largest Medicare biller in California for chiropractic services – even though he was not in the United States when some of the alleged services were performed. In addition to being charged with health care fraud, Pavehzadeh is charged with aggravated identity theft related to Medicare beneficiaries whose information he used to bill Medicare as a part of the scheme. When investigators tried to conduct an audit of Pavehzadeh’s claims, he falsely reported to the Los Angeles Police Department that he had been carjacked and that patient files requested by the auditors had been stolen from his car. Pavehzadeh surrendered this morning, and he is scheduled to be arraigned with other Los Angeles-area defendants this afternoon in the Roybal Federal Building.

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May 15, 2013

JANITOR SENTENCED TO 270 DAYS IN JAIL FOR PLACING HIDDEN VIDEO CAMERA INSIDE WOMENS BATHROOM AT AN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:27 am

SANTA ANA - A janitor was sentenced today to 270 days in jail for placing a hidden video camera inside a women’s bathroom stall at an elementary school. Angel Rojas, 25, Corona, was found guilty by a jury, May 9 2013, of one misdemeanor count each of disorderly conduct for secretly filming another, and child annoyance. Rojas was also sentenced to three years formal probation, ordered to pay $7,000 in fines, and mandatory lifetime sex offender registration.

In June 2012, Rojas was working as a janitor during the summer for the Santa Ana Unified School District.

On July 16, 2012, Rojas worked at Glenn L. Martin Elementary School in Santa Ana. Rojas closed down several of the women’s bathrooms around the school by locking the doors in order to direct women and children into a specific bathroom. Rojas entered the specific women’s bathroom and hid an iPad Nano equipped with a video recorder inside the restroom.

Jane Doe, who worked for a summer school program at the school, entered the bathroom stall and found the device. The device was turned in to the Santa Ana Unified School District Police Department, who investigated this case, and discovered one video recording of Jane Doe in the bathroom and arrested Rojas on July 25, 2012.

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ARGENTINE NATIONAL SENTENCED FOR RECEIVING AND STORING OVER 700,000 TABLETS OF PRESCRIPTION DRUGS FROM OVERSEAS

Filed under: Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:14 am

LOS ANGELES - A federal judge today sentenced an Argentine man, Felix Gabriel Alderete, to one year of imprisonment for his participation in a conspiracy to traffic in prescription drugs, including Lorazepam, Diazepam, Alprazolam, Ketamine, and Sibutramine. 

In January 2013, Alderete pleaded guilty to the offense and admitted that in 2011, he had picked up packages from mailbox facilities in the Los Angeles area that had been sent by express mail from overseas.  The packages contained tens of thousands of tablets of these drugs.  According to court documents, on October 22, 2011, a search of a storage unit that defendant had visited and for which he had paid rent resulted in the discovery of nearly 60 boxes of over 700,000 tablets and over 5,000 empty pill bottles and bottles with labels.  A search of an apartment that Alderete shared with others uncovered nearly 1,000 tablets along with labels and pill bottles, as well as a computer containing spreadsheets documenting sales of pharmaceuticals to customers throughout the country. Defendant left the country shortly after the searches were conducted and he was arrested when he tried to reenter the country in October 2012. 

In pronouncing the sentence, United States District Judge Percy Anderson observed that the defendant had participated in a “serious offense” for over seven months that warranted a custodial sentence.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

 CONTACT:        Assistant United States Attorney Ronald Cheng
           Cyber and Intellectual Property Crimes Section
           (213) 894-8644

DOJ Central District of California / Release No. 12-069 / Monday, May 13, 2013

May 14, 2013

West Hollywood Doctor Indicted on Federal Charges for Writing Prescriptions for Narcotics after being Ordered to Stop

Filed under: Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:08 am

LOS ANGELES – A West Hollywood doctor surrendered to federal authorities this morning after being indicted last Friday on federal drug trafficking charges that allege he wrote more than 1,200 prescriptions for powerful painkillers after a federal order revoked his authority to prescribe those drugs.

James William Eisenberg, 72, who resides in the Venice district of Los Angeles, surrendered this morning at the United States Courthouse, where he is expected to be arraigned this afternoon.

Eisenberg is named in an indictment that charges him with four counts of using a revoked DEA registration number and three counts of distribution of hydrocodone, which is the generic drug found in brand-name products such as Vicodin and Norco.

Eisenberg allegedly wrote the prescriptions while he worked out of several medical offices in West Hollywood, including a Santa Monica Boulevard storefront he called Pacific Support Services. Eisenberg also issued “medical marijuana” recommendations from these West Hollywood locations, according to court documents and DEA administrative records.

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DANA POINT YACHT BROKER ARRESTED ON CHARGES OF DEFRAUDING 26 VICTIMS OF OVER $1.5 MILLION

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:02 am

SANTA ANA - A former Dana Point yacht broker has been arrested in Florida on charges of stealing over $1.5 million from 26 victims in an investment and fraudulent sale scheme.  Edward Sellers Fitzgerald, 60, formerly of Dana Point, is charged with eight felony counts of theft from an elder, 19 felony counts of using untrue statements in the purchase or sale of a security, 17 felony counts of grand theft, and 14 felony counts of issuing non-sufficient checks with the intent to defraud. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 58 years in state prison. Fitzgerald was arrested today, Friday, May 10, 2013, in Delray Beach, Florida, by the Delray Beach Police Department on a $1.6 million warrant from Orange County and will face extradition proceedings in Florida.

Between 2007 and July 2009, Fitzgerald is accused of being the owner of a Dana Point yacht brokerage, Dana Island Yacht Sales and Charters. He is accused of defrauding 26 victims of over $1.5 million in various investment schemes related to the buying and selling of yachts.

Fitzgerald is accused of defrauding some of his victims by securing loans from friends and acquaintances under the false pretense of purchasing boats for resale. He is accused of failing to purchase boats as promised, using new investors to pay off previous investors, and stealing the money to pay his personal expenses. In some cases, Fitzgerald is accused of selling yachts on behalf of clients, embezzling the sale funds from his escrow account, and either failing to return the funds to the victims or issuing checks to the victims that were returned as non-sufficient funds.  The defendant is also accused of stealing deposits put down by victims for the purchase of boats and failing to secure the sale or return the deposit.

In July 2009, the defendant is accused of cleaning out his bank accounts and moving away without telling any of his victims or providing his location or contact information.

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May 13, 2013

MAN SENTENCED TO 50 YEARS TO LIFE IN PRISON FOR MURDERING FATHER BY SHOOTING HIM AFTER DISPUTE OVER KEEPING FIREARM IN THEIR HOME

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:59 am

SANTA ANA - A man was sentenced today to 50 years to life in state prison for murdering his father by shooting him after a dispute over keeping a firearm in their Huntington Beach home. Jeremy Dwayne Martin, 37, was found guilty by a jury March 26, 2013, of one felony count of murder with a sentencing enhancement for the personal discharge of a firearm causing death.

In May 2011, Jeremy Martin was living in Huntington Beach with his 62-year-old father Frederick Martin. Early in the morning on May 20, 2011, Jeremy Martin got into a verbal and physical argument with his father because the victim was unhappy that Jeremy Martin was keeping a firearm in the home.

Frederick Martin called 911 and asked the Huntington Beach Police Department (HBPD) to come to the home to “evaluate” his son. The victim made no mention of the firearm or physical altercation to the officers. HBPD officers responded to the home, but Jeremy Martin did not answer the door.

After the officers left, Jeremy Martin murdered the victim by shooting him one time. Frederick Martin died at the scene. Jeremy Martin called 911 and reported that he shot his father. He was arrested at the scene by HBPD.

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Father and Son Linked to Separate Fraud Schemes Arrested at LAX as they Prepared to Leave U.S. with One-Way Plane Tickets to Russia

Filed under: Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:54 am

 LOS ANGELES – A father and son were arrested yesterday afternoon as they were about to board a plane to Moscow on federal fraud charges that include allegations that the older man sent tens of thousands of bogus “invoices” to small business owners in California in a shakedown scheme that caused at least 5,000 victims to send $225 to a fake company that purported to be a state agency.

The men – Viktor Ryzhkin, 45, of the Little Armenia section of Los Angeles; and his son, Evgenii Ryzhkin, 22, who lived with his father – were arrested late yesterday afternoon at Los Angeles International Airport by federal agents as they prepared to board a Transaero Airlines flight to Russia. The Ryzhkins, both of whom are Russian nationals, and two other family members, all had one-way tickets to Moscow that had been purchased on Monday.

According to a criminal complaint filed Thursday afternoon in United States District Court, Viktor Ryzhkin targeted more than 170,000 California small business owners in a mail fraud scheme that would have brought in nearly $40 million had all of the potential victims complied with demands to send payments to “Corporate Business Filings,” a Beverly Hills company set up and controlled by Viktor Ryzhkin.

The small business owners targeted in this scheme received invoices that appeared to be from the State of California, notifying them that they each owed $225 to the state and directing them to fill out certain forms related to their businesses. The letters sent to the victims – all of which were sent over the course of several days at the end of March and beginning of April – each listed the correct, publicly available California Small Business Administration entity number assigned to the particular small business. The business owners were told in the letters that they would face $250 penalties if they did not remit payment by April 15, 2013, and did not fill out the forms as directed. The letters and invoices that appeared to be from the State of California were completely bogus.

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REGISTERED SEX OFFENDER INDICTED ON SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES MURDER OF 29-YEAR-OLD WOMAN IN THE COURSE OF SEXUAL ASSAULT IN MOTEL ROOM

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:03 am

SANTA ANA - A registered sex offender has been indicted for the special circumstances murder of a 29-year-old woman in the course of sexually assaulting her in a Stanton motel room. Charles Patrick Drew, 63, transient, was indicted by the Orange County Grady Jury yesterday, May 9, 2013, on one felony count of special circumstances murder in the commission of rape, sodomy, oral copulation, and sexual penetration by foreign object, one felony count each of rape of an unconscious person, sodomy of unconscious victim, oral copulation of unconscious person, sexual penetration by foreign object of unconscious victim, and assault with a deadly weapon.

The defendant has two prior strike convictions from 1995 for forcible rape and assault with a deadly weapon. If convicted, he faces a minimum sentence of life in state prison without the possibility of parole. The special circumstances in this case also make Drew eligible for the death penalty. The defendant is being held without bail and is scheduled for a pre-trial trial setting conference June 7, 2013, at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-40, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.

On June 15, 2012, the Orange County District Attorney’s Office released a press release on this case with the following information:

Sometime between March 17, 2012, and March 18, 2012, Drew is accused of staying in a rented motel room at Motel 6 in Stanton with 29-year-old Jane Doe. Drew is accused of brutally sexually assaulting the victim while she was unconscious including rape, sodomy, and oral copulation. The victim died shortly after the sexual assault. Drew is accused of then attempting to clean the scene.

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May 10, 2013

MAN TO FACE TRIAL FOR SEXUALLY ASSAULTING SIX AND SEVEN-YEAR-OLD GIRLS

Filed under: Federal Crimes Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 3:17 am

SANTA ANA – A man is facing trial today for sexually assaulting a six and seven-year-old girl. German Bravo DeJesus, 34, Lake Forest, is charged with three felony counts of lewd acts with a minor under 14 and sentencing enhancement allegations for multiple victims and substantial sexual conduct with a child. If convicted, DeJesus faces a maximum sentence of 45 years to life in state prison and mandatory lifetime sex offender registration. Opening statements are scheduled to begin today in Department C-41, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana. The time is to be determined.

On Jan. 17, 2009, 7-year-old Jane Doe #1 went to Palm Terrace Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in Laguna Woods to visit a family member. She was in the waiting room with another relative close to her age. DeJesus, who worked at the facility, is accused of approaching and asking Jane Doe #1 her name. He is accused of then touching her vagina over her clothes and walking away.  A short time later, DeJesus is accused of returning to the waiting room, approaching Jane Doe #1, and again touching her vagina over her clothes and fleeing the scene.

On the night of July 8, 2011, 6-year-old Jane Doe #2 was at the Grand Park in Aliso Viejo for a movie night. DeJesus is accused of approaching Jane Doe #2, who was playing with a relative just 10 feet from her father, and asking her name. He is accused of putting his hand down her pants and touching her vagina. The defendant is accused of then fleeing the scene. Jane Doe #2 immediately told her father and the police were contacted. Shortly thereafter, an Orange County Sheriff’s deputy arrested DeJesus on his bike riding away from the park.

If convicted, DeJesus’ lifetime sex offender registration will bar him from entering County recreational areas and City parks which have passed the Sex Offender Ordinance. Visit www.orangecountyda.com to read the prior press releases on the County’s Sex Offender Ordinance as well as the 14 other cities that have enacted the Child Safety Zone Ordinance.

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