The former general manager of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) was sentenced today to 72 months in federal prison for accepting bribes from a lawyer in exchange for his official action to secure a three-year, $30 million no-bid LADWP contract for the lawyer’s company. David H.
The Justice Department announced today the seizure of Hydra Market (Hydra), the world’s largest and longest-running darknet market. In 2021, Hydra accounted for an estimated 80% of all darknet market-related cryptocurrency transactions, and since 2015, the marketplace has received approximately $5.2 billion in cryptocurrency. The seizure of the Hydra servers
A federal jury convicted a California man yesterday for submitting fraudulent applications seeking money from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), submitting false statements to a financial institution, and money laundering. According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, Robert Benlevi, 53, of Encino, submitted 27 PPP loan applications to
An Orange County man was sentenced to 188 months in federal prison for selling nearly four pounds of methamphetamine while he was on supervised release following a 2009 terrorism conviction. Ahmed Binyamin Alasiri, 45, a.k.a. Kevin Lamar James, of Garden Grove, was sentenced by United States District Judge Cormac J.
Two Los Angeles County men today were sentenced to federal prison on conspiracy and hate crime charges for attacking five victims inside a family-owned Turkish restaurant in 2020 while shouting ethnic slurs, hurling chairs at the victims, and threatening to kill them. William Stepanyan, 23, of Glendale was sentenced to
An Orange County man – whose company used high-pressure sales tactics to raise more than $9.5 million with bogus claims that the outfit’s solar panels utilized nanotechnology to generate electricity three times more efficiently than traditional solar panels – was sentenced today to 78 months in federal prison. Michael James
A total of eight defendants have been charged in a superseding indictment for submitting over $25 million in fraudulent unemployment insurance claims in the identities of inmates, minor children, and others to the California Employment Development Department (EDD) during the COVID-19 pandemic. The indictment was announced today by U.S. Attorney
An active-duty Marine stationed at Camp Pendleton was arrested Tuesday on charges that he cyberstalked multiple young women with ties to his former hometown of Torrance in a “sextortion” campaign. Johao Miguel Chavarri, 25, of Oceanside, is expected to make his initial appearance this afternoon in United States District Court
A former California Employment Development Department (EDD) employee was sentenced today to 63 months in federal prison for causing nearly 200 fraudulent COVID-related unemployment relief claims to be filed in other people’s names, resulting in nearly $4.3 million in ill-gotten gains. Gabriela Llerenas, a.k.a. “Maria G. Sandoval,” 44, of Perris,
A Huntington Park man was sentenced this morning to 252 months in federal prison for committing 21 armed robberies and attempted armed robberies of Trader Joe’s grocery stores throughout Southern California during a three-month crime spree. Gregory Johnson, 44, was sentenced by United States District Judge Virginia A. Phillips for
Federal prosecutors today filed fraud charges against a New Jersey man who allegedly posed as a former player for the New England Patriots, which allowed him to purchase family versions of the team’s 2016 Super Bowl championship ring – supposedly as gifts to relatives of quarterback Tom Brady – one
Michael Kail, the former Vice President of IT Operations at Netflix, was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison for his convictions for honest services wire, mail fraud, and money laundering, announced Acting United States Attorney Stephanie M. Hinds, Federal Bureau of Investigation Craig D. Fair, and IRS-Criminal Investigation Special
A federal grand jury returned a 15-count indictment that accuses the former controller for two Anaheim-based companies of embezzling more than $3 million by directing the transfer of company funds to bank accounts that she controlled. Rosalba Meza, also known as “Rosalba Sceville,” 47, of Coto de Caza, who was