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June 22, 2017


Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:09 am

SANTA ANA, Calif. – A man was convicted today of attacking a woman on a jogging trail with the intent to sexually assault her.

Defendant Charges Maximum Sentence Court Date
Mario Orlando Montano, 59, Anaheim Found guilty by a jury today of the following felony counts:

  • Assault with the intent to commit a sexual offense
  • Assault with force likely to produce great bodily injury

Sentencing Enhancements Found True

  • Great bodily injury to a sexual assault victim
  • Great bodily injury
11 years in state prison Sentencing

Aug. 4, 2017, 9:00 a.m.

Department C-36, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana

Circumstances of the Case



Filed under: California Appeals Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:06 am

SANTA ANA, Calif. – A bookkeeper was convicted yesterday of embezzling over $1.3 million from a law firm and issuing unauthorized checks for her own benefit.

Defendant Charges Maximum Exposure Court Date
Shawna Renee Barretto, 43, Anaheim Pleaded guilty on June 20, 2017, to the following felony counts:

  • (22) Computer access fraud
  • (21) Falsifying records
  • (7) Grand theft
  • (2) Identity theft
  • Theft from elder

Sentencing Enhancements

  • Aggravated white collar crime over $500,000
  • Property loss over $1.3 million
32 years in state prison Sentencing

Feb. 5, 2018, 8:30 a.m.

Department C-57, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana

Circumstances of the Case


Palmdale Mayor, Two Consultants Charged in Public Corruption Case

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

Palmdale Mayor Jim Ledford has been charged with illegally receiving more than $60,000 a year from local consultants and failing to publicly disclose the income on economic statements, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced today.

Ledford (dob 6/24/53) was charged in case BA458328 with one count each of conspiracy and conflict of interest and three counts of perjury.

Also charged are Kimberly Anne Shaw (dob 9/2/55) of Yorba Linda and Susan Burgess Miller (dob 6/26/48) of Las Vegas. Both Shaw and Miller face the same conspiracy count as well as one count each of embezzlement and misappropriation of public funds.

Ledford is expected to be arraigned today in Department 30 of the Foltz Criminal Justice Center. The case was filed for warrant today.

Between Aug. 1, 2009 and May 3, 2017, the defendants utilized various shell companies to pay Ledford approximately $5,200 a month, according to the criminal complaint.


June 21, 2017

Orange County Man Arrested on Federal Charges Related to Illegal Importation of Ozone-Depleting Refrigerant R-22

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:09 am

LOS ANGELES – A Garden Grove man was arraigned this afternoon on an indictment that charges him with illegally importing a large shipment of a highly regulated chemical compound known as R-22 under the pretense that he was actually bringing into the United States a safe refrigerant that does not destroy the ozone layer.

Mahmoud Alkabbani, 63, the owner of USA Car Parts in Garden Grove, pleaded not guilty this afternoon to the nine-count indictment. A trial date was set for August 8.

Alkabbani was arrested Friday evening at Los Angeles International Airport after he returned to the United States from a trip abroad. At today’s arraignment, he was ordered released on a $30,000 bond.

R-22 is R22Chlorodifluoromethane, sometimes known as HCFC-22, a refrigerant gas and class II ozone-depleting substance. Pursuant to international treaty, the use of R-22 is being phased out around the world. In the United States, pursuant to the Clean Air Act, only parties with unexpended “consumption allowances” are allowed to import the chemical.

According to the indictment, Alkabbani entered into an agreement with a Chinese company to purchase R-22, which was packaged in cylinders bearing counterfeit “Glacier” trademarks. The 2013 contract with the Chinese company listed the product as R-134a – which is not regulated by the Clean Air Act and does not deplete the ozone layer – but a second, secret agreement called for the Chinese company to actually sell R-22 to Alkabbani.


Man Convicted of Rape, Attempted Murder of Estranged Wife

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:06 am

A 32-year-old man was convicted today of brutally beating and sexually assaulting his wife in her South Los Angeles home, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

The jury deliberated for less than a day before finding Bryan Keith Mitchell guilty of three felony counts in case TA138142: attempted murder, spousal rape and assault with a deadly weapon.

Jurors also found true a special allegation that the defendant personally used a deadly and dangerous weapon, a bat, during the commission of the crime. Additionally, jurors found true that Mitchell personally inflicted great bodily injury on the victim during the attack.

Mitchell is scheduled to be sentenced July 20 in Department K of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Compton Branch. The defendant faces a maximum possible sentence of life in state prison.

Deputy District Attorney Craig Rouviere of the Victim Impact Program, who prosecuted the case, said at the time of the crime Mitchell’s wife had filed a restraining order against her husband.

On Sept. 5, 2015, Mitchell entered his wife’s South Los Angeles home through a window, grabbed a bat and began to beat her, the prosecutor said.

The defendant then dragged his wife into another room and raped her, the prosecutor added.


Former DWP Employee Sentenced For Misappropriating Public Funds

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

A former audio-visual technician for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power was sentenced today to five years in state prison for misappropriating more than $4 million in public funds, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Thatcus Carl Richard, 66, was remanded into custody after being sentenced by Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge James Dabney. Richard also was ordered to pay $4.4 million in restitution to DWP.

In March, Richard entered an open plea to nine counts each of conflict of interest, public officer crime and embezzlement by a public officer.

Deputy District Attorneys Susan Ser and Russell Moore of the Public Integrity Division prosecuted the case.

Between July 1995 and March 2014, Richard enlisted friends to establish audio-visual companies and helped award DWP contracts to them.

In return, the companies would then subcontract the work to Richard, who used DWP’s own equipment and resources to perform the work.

Case BA433122 was investigated by the District Attorney’s Bureau of Investigation.

Los Angeles County District Attorney / Case BA433122 / June 20, 2017

June 20, 2017

Man Charged with Elder Abuse, Burglary in Pomona

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 1:55 pm

A 24-year-old man was charged today with breaking into his grandfather’s Pomona home and severely beating the elderly man, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Sammeon Christian Waller (dob 10/16/92) has been charged with two felony counts in case KA115541: elder abuse and first-degree burglary, person present.

The felony complaint includes a special allegation that the defendant inflicted great bodily injury on the 82-year-old victim during the commission of the crime.

Waller is scheduled to be arraigned today in Department N of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Pomona Branch. Prosecutors are asking that bail be set at $155,000.

Deputy District Sandra Jimenez, who is assigned to the case, said police were called on June 9 to conduct a welfare check on an 82-year-old Pomona man who had not been seen for several days.


Pasadena Man Found Guilty of Domestic Violence Killing of Ex-Girlfriend Found in Car

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 1:52 pm

A jury found a man guilty today of killing the mother of his two children, whose body was discovered in 2015 inside her vehicle parked in Monrovia, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Deputy District Attorney Fernanda Barreto said the jury deliberated for about eight hours before finding Jose Roberto Turner, 49, of Pasadena, guilty of one count of first-degree murder with an allegation that a rope or cord was used as a deadly weapon.

Sentencing is scheduled on July 10 in Department G of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Burbank Branch. Turner faces 26 years to life in state prison.

The body of LaJoya McCoy, 31, was found inside her vehicle, parked on the 200 block of West Cypress Avenue on June 16, 2015, the prosecutor said.

According to evidence presented at the trial, Turner strangled the victim to death and stabbed her on June 10, 2015. The defendant had previously threatened McCoy’s life after their relationship ended, the prosecutor added.


Genesis Healthcare Inc. Agrees to Pay Federal Government $53.6 Million to Resolve False Claims Act Allegations Relating to the Provision of Medically Unnecessary Rehabilitation Therapy and Hospice Services

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 1:38 pm

The Justice Department announced today that Genesis Healthcare Inc. (Genesis) will pay the federal government $53,639,288.04, including interest, to settle six federal lawsuits and investigations alleging that companies and facilities acquired by Genesis violated the False Claims Act by causing the submission of false claims to government health care programs for medically unnecessary therapy and hospice services, and grossly substandard nursing care. Genesis, headquartered in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, owns and operates through its subsidiaries skilled nursing facilities, assisted/senior living facilities, and a rehabilitation therapy business.

“We will continue to hold health care providers accountable if they bill for unnecessary or substandard services or treatment,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Chad A. Readler of the Justice Department’s Civil Division. “Today’s settlement demonstrates our unwavering commitment to protect federal health care programs against unscrupulous providers.”

This settlement resolves four sets of allegations. First, the settlement resolves allegations that from April 1, 2010 through March 31, 2013, Skilled Healthcare Group Inc. (SKG) and its subsidiaries, Skilled Healthcare LLC (Skilled LLC) and Creekside Hospice II LLC, knowingly submitted or caused to be submitted false claims to Medicare for services performed at the Creekside Hospice facility in Las Vegas, Nevada by: (1) billing for hospice services for patients who were not terminally ill and so were not eligible for the Medicare hospice benefit and (2) billing inappropriately for certain physician evaluation management services.

Second, this settlement resolves allegations that from Jan. 1, 2005 through Dec. 31, 2013, SKG and its subsidiaries, Skilled LLC and Hallmark Rehabilitation GP LLC, knowingly submitted or caused to be submitted false claims to Medicare, TRICARE, and Medicaid at certain facilities by providing therapy to certain patients longer than medically necessary, and/or billing for more therapy minutes than the patients actually received. The settlement also resolves allegations that those companies fraudulently assigned patients a higher Resource Utilization Group (RUG) level than necessary. Medicare reimburses skilled nursing facilities based on a patient’s RUG level, which is supposed to be determined by the amount of skilled therapy required by the patient.

Third, this settlement resolves allegations that from Jan. 1, 2008, through Sept. 27, 2013, Sun Healthcare Group Inc., SunDance Rehabilitation Agency Inc., and SunDance Rehabilitation Corp. knowingly submitted or caused the submission of false claims to Medicare Part B by billing for outpatient therapy services provided in the State of Georgia that were (1) not medically necessary or (2) unskilled in nature.


June 19, 2017

Van Nuys Man Named in Federal Fraud Indictment Alleging $7 Million Foreclosure-Delay Scam Targeting Struggling Homeowners

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:09 am

LOS ANGELESThe alleged mastermind of a foreclosure-avoidance scam that targeted distressed homeowners has been arrested on federal charges that he orchestrated a bankruptcy fraud scheme that brought in more than $7 million from victims.

Michael “Mickey” Henschel, 68, of Van Nuys, was arrested Wednesday morning by federal agents with the FBI and the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s Office of Inspector General (FHFA-OIG). Henschel was arrested pursuant to an 11-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury on June 8.

During a court hearing this afternoon, Henschel was ordered detained pending trial.

According to the indictment unsealed after his arrest, Henschel owned a Van Nuys-based company he operated under several names, including Valueline. Henschel and several co-conspirators marketed illegal foreclosure- and eviction-delay services to homeowners who had defaulted on their mortgages and renters who were facing eviction. As part of the scheme, Henschel and the others allegedly convinced homeowners to sign fake grant deeds that purported to show the homeowners had conveyed an interest in their properties to fictional third parties.

Henschel and his co-conspirators allegedly filed bankruptcies in the names of fictional persons and entities to trigger the automatic stay provision of the Bankruptcy Code, which meant that foreclosure sales were stalled.


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