Camarillo Man Sentenced for Identity Theft
Camarillo Man Sentenced for Identity Theft
In 2015, a Camarillo man was arrested and charged with identity theft, grand theft and financial abuse of an elder after police say he used a terminally ill man’s identity to acquire construction materials fraudulently. Officers from the Oxnard Police Department and the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office investigated the crime over the course of about a month.

According to police, Josh Evans stole his former employer’s identity and impersonated him to acquire construction materials from a number of local suppliers in Ventura and Los Angeles Counties. Upon searching Evans’ home and vehicle, police found more than $20,000 worth of stolen goods that Evans allegedly obtained using his employer’s identity.

Evans pleaded guilty to two counts of grand theft and a single count of financial abuse of an elder or dependent adult and will be sentenced on January 6, 2017. He will also appear in court on two unrelated charges at that time.

Camarillo Identity Theft Lawyer


If you’ve been arrested for identity theft in Camarillo, attorney Robert Helfend is ready to take your case. Mr. Helfend has practiced criminal defense exclusively for more than 30 years in Camarillo and throughout Southern California. He has built a reputation as a skilled, aggressive criminal defense attorney and works selflessly to ensure that his clients’ rights are respected in court.

It’s essential to defend yourself against all employment-related crimes. A felony conviction for a work-related crime will make it difficult – if not impossible – to find gainful employment following the completion of your sentence. A skilled criminal defense attorney will work aggressively to get the charges against you reduced or dropped. That can reduce or eliminate your risk of incarceration, as well as the impact of a conviction on your criminal record.

Don’t rely on an inexperienced criminal defense attorney, or one who won’t fight for your rights in court.

Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura County identity theft case.

Photo Credit: Ross, via Flickr.com

Domestic Violence Charges for Ventura Man
Domestic Violence Charges for Ventura Man
A Ventura man is facing domestic violence charges, aggravated mayhem and attempted murder charges following a violent knife attack on his girlfriend.

According to Ojai police, they responded to a call regarding a domestic dispute. When they arrived, they found a woman with a long laceration on her face. She had been slashed by her boyfriend, Colin Meyer, during their dispute. Meyer fled the scene before police arrived.

The woman was transported to the Ventura County Medical Center for treatment of her injuries. Later, police spotted the suspect in Ventura, and he was arrested. He was also transported to the Ventura County Medical Center to receive treatment for a self-inflicted knife wound. He was arraigned on the domestic violence assault and attempted murder charges. He was given a $1M bond. He is currently awaiting trial in the Ventura County Jail.

Ojai Domestic Violence Attorney


If you’ve been arrested on a domestic violence charge, your first move should be to hire an experienced domestic violence attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has more than 30 years of experience in criminal defense in Ventura County and throughout Southern California. He has provided effective, aggressive defense services for hundreds of Southern California residents, and is ready to take your domestic violence case.

No one will dispute that a criminal conviction will have life-altering consequences, but the consequences don’t start at the time of conviction. Even being arrested for a crime – whether you’re convicted or not – will have a significant impact on your life.

Bail is a constitutional right. In most cases, if you’ve been arrested, you’ll be granted bail. The purpose of bail is to ensure that you return to court, so there are some circumstances in which you will not receive bail. For example, if you’ve arrested for murder, or if you pose an obvious flight risk while facing serious criminal charges, the judge may not grant bail, or may set bail very high.

Sometimes however, judges set a very high bail knowing that a defendant doesn’t have the resources to get a bond. An aggressive criminal defense lawyer will work to ensure that your rights are respected throughout the criminal process, and will advocate on your behalf for everything, including a reasonable bail amount.

Don’t risk your freedom on an inexperienced attorney, or one who won’t fight for your rights. Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura County domestic violence/sex crimes case.

Photo Credit: cea+, via Flickr.com

Camarillo Teen Charged with DUI Death
Camarillo Teen Charged with DUI Death
Justin Stalberg, 19, of Camarillo, was charged with DUI causing injury and gross vehicular manslaughter after crashing his pickup truck into a home in Thousand Oaks. A 74-year-old man who was sleeping in the home died at the scene.

According to police, Stalberg failed to stop at a dead-end street and traveled down a 40-foot embankment before crashing into the back of the home. The victim, a New York resident, was visiting the home at the time of the accident. No other occupants of the home were injured in the crash, which occurred on December 22.

Prior to the accident, Stalberg attended a house party with several former high school classmates. His next court appearance is scheduled for January 6.

Camarillo DUI lawyer


If you’ve been arrested for a DUI in Ventura, your first response should be to hire an experienced Ventura DUI attorney like Robert Helfend. Dealing with a drunk driving arrest is complex. Your situation is even more complex if another person was injured or killed in your drunk driving accident.

Any DUI arrest is serious, but drunk driving laws in California are designed to respond to the seriousness of the situation. The penalties you’ll face will depend upon the circumstances of your arrest, including whether or not your arrest is a first offense, or a repeat offense.

A DUI arrest isn’t like other crimes; you’ll face two different processes – one that’s administrative and the other that’s criminal. For example, the DMV will suspend your driver’s license immediately following a drunk driving arrest. The court can also suspend your driver’s license as part of the judicial process. The two suspensions are independent, as are other sanctions that may be applied by either the DMV or the court.

Do not attempt to defend yourself if you’ve been arrested for drunk driving. Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura County domestic violence/sex crimes case.

Photo Credit: Ross Hawkes, via Flickr.com

Picture does not depict actual crash scene.

Drug possession arrest for Simi Valley man
Drug possession arrest for Simi Valley man
A Los Angeles man was arrested for drug possession, after Simi Valley police developed information that he was selling drugs in both Ventura County and Los Angeles County. Maurice Bullard, of Los Angeles, was charged with drug possession following a four month investigation into his alleged sales of heroin and methamphetamine.

Bullard was arrested as he left his apartment, and had heroin and methamphetamine in his possession at the time of his arrest. Following his arrest, police searched Bullard’s apartment and found additional quantities of both drugs, cash, weapons and ammunition.

While the number of drug arrests in California has dropped significantly since the passage of Proposal 47, drug arrests in Ventura County have actually risen as police concentrate on arresting more drug dealers in an effort to stem the flow of drugs into the community. Under Prop 47, police still arrest individuals for possession if they’re found with heroin, methamphetamine or cocaine, or if they’re carrying quantities of drugs that suggest a sales operation.

Simi Valley drug possession attorney


California has taken some major steps toward changing the way it addresses drug crimes. Today, people who are found with personal quantities of certain drugs will be issued a citation, instead of being arrested. More serious drug charges tend to be reserved for individuals who are involved in drug sales. If you’ve been arrested for drug crimes of any kind, you need the assistance of an experienced drug possession attorney like Robert Helfend.

Mr. Helfend is an aggressive defense attorney, and will work hard to get the charges against you dropped or reduced. Reducing the severity of the charges against you, or eliminating charges altogether is a primary defense strategy. By reducing your exposure to risk, Mr. Helfend can help you potentially avoid felony convictions, reduce the likelihood of incarceration or reduce the amount of time you may be incarcerated if you are convicted.

Don’t risk your freedom on an inexperienced attorney!Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura County drug possession/embezzlement case.

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Ventura murder suspect arrested in TX
Ventura murder suspect arrested in TX
A man suspected in a double shooting in Ventura on December 4, in which one person died, was arrested for murder in Amarillo, TX on December 15. According to news reports, Ventura police developed information that Sadiki Shakur, of Ventura, had fled the area following a shooting.

Police allege that Shakur shot Spencer Turner, 27, of Ventura and another man as they left the Golden China Restaurant. Turner died at the scene and the other man was taken to the hospital. No motive for the shootings is known.

Amarillo police spotted Shakur’s rental vehicle parked at an Amarillo pizza restaurant. They surveilled the car until Shakur and another man left the restaurant. They conducted a traffic stop and arrested Shakur, the driver, and Ryan Pierret, a passenger, who is not connected to the shootings. Pierret was arrested for drug possession for having a small amount of marijuana on his person. Shakur is being held without bond in Amarillo, and faces an extradition hearing to California.

Ventura Murder Attorney

Murder is the most serious crime one can face in the State of California. Conviction on a homicide charge can result in the death penalty, life in prison with or without parole, or a long prison term. If you’ve been accused of murder in Ventura, it’s essential that you hire an experienced Ventura murder attorney like Robert Helfend.

Mr. Helfend has practiced criminal defense exclusively in Ventura and throughout Southern California for more than 30 years. He has the experience to provide a rigorous, aggressive and effective defense on your behalf. Don’t put your life on the line or take risks with an inexperienced criminal defense attorney.

Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura County murder case.
Photo Credit: AAJC1, via Flickr.com

Antitrust crimes prosecuted aggressively by Feds
Antitrust crimes prosecuted aggressively by Feds
The US Department of Justice reported that it prosecuted 44 individuals in FY 2014 for antitrust violations. Many actions are brought against companies, but individual executives can also be charged with criminal violations of the federal anti-competition laws.

Criminal activities that are governed by the federal statutes include price fixing, bid rigging and market allocation schemes. Of the 44 prosecutions in 2014, the DOJ says that 22 of the defendants were executives in auto parts companies. 11 defendants were real estate investors.

In the past twenty-five years, the average number of antitrust prosecutions per year has risen from 13 in the 1990’s to 29 between 2010 and 2014. In other words, the DOJ has more than doubled its average number of prosecutions. In addition, the average prison sentence for convictions has also more than tripled during the same time. In the 1990’s, the average prison sentence for convictions was 8 months. Today, the average prison sentence for the same crimes is 25 months.

This signals the federal government’s plan to pursue more prosecutions and more aggressive prosecutions for antitrust violations. In addition to more prosecutions and longer jail terms, the federal government is expanding its sphere of influence. In 2013, the Department of Justice secured its first ever extradition of a foreign national for prosecution on anti-competitive practices in the US. That extradition was quickly followed by a second extradition in an unrelated case.

Ventura County Antitrust Lawyer


The greater Los Angeles area is a prime target for federal prosecutions because so much business is conducted here. The Port of Los Angeles is the largest port in the United States, and one of the largest in the world. Each year, the Port of Los Angeles handles more than $300 billion in goods coming to and leaving from the United States. It is an area of prime interest for the federal government, and the DOJ is getting very good at breaking up multinational antitrust conspiracies. Having a foreign address may not offer much protection against federal investigators.

That’s why you need the assistance of an experienced antitrust lawyer like Robert Helfend. If you’re facing federal antitrust charges, don’t settle for an inexperienced lawyer! Mr. Helfend has more than 30 years of criminal defense experience at both the state and federal levels.

Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura County antitrust case.

Photo Credit: Kyle Brown, via Flickr.com

Sex crimes arrest for couple in Camarillo
Sex crimes arrest for couple in Camarillo
Two adults were arrested at a Camarillo motel after police acted on an anonymous tip regarding a 15-year-old girl. Police obtained a search warrant and raided the motel room, which had been rented by the couple. According to police, the couple was charged with sex crimes related to human trafficking, child pornography, forcing a minor to commit a commercial sex act and pimping.

Simi Valley resident Jessica Stanley, and Thousand Oaks resident Robert McGraa were charged after undercover police contacted Stanley through anonymous ads she had placed on an online escort site. While making arrangements to meet, police say that Stanley made an explicit offer of sexual services to be performed by the 15-year-old victim. Stanley told the undercover officer that he could meet the girl at the motel after she finished her school day. Stanley would not provide the room number, but said she would provide the information after the undercover officer arrived at the motel for the arranged meeting.

After the undercover officer made contact with Stanley at the motel and ascertained the girl’s room number, a team of officers served the search warrant and arrested Stanley and McGraa. The girl was not arrested, and was provided with victims’ services through the District Attorney’s Office and through Child Protective Services of Ventura County.

Stanley and McGraa face as many as 20 years in prison if convicted on human trafficking charges.

Ventura sex crimes attorney


Sex crimes convictions have long-lasting consequences. Most often, those convicted of sex crimes must register for life as sex offenders. That designation follows you wherever you go, even if you move out of state. Often, registered sex offenders cannot find gainful employment or suitable housing following their release from custody or supervision.

Having an experienced sex crimes attorney fighting for you in court is one of the smartest moves you can make if you’ve been arrested on suspicion of committing sexual offenses. Don’t risk your freedom and your future on an inexperienced sex crimes attorney.
Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura sex crimes case.

Photo Credit: badjonni, via Flickr.com

Securities fraud appeal settled
Securities fraud appeal settled
Earlier this year, the Second District Court of Appeals informally upheld a plea agreement by two former Southern California mortgage brokers that allowed the defendants to avoid trial and pay restitution of just over $100,000 in a securities fraud case that involved investor losses of more than $8 million.

A local San Luis Obispo judge initially overturned the plea agreement, but was instructed by the appeals court to reinstate the plea agreements for Rodney Jarmin and Tammy Jordan, who owned a firm called Real Property Lenders. In 2011, the District Attorney filed seven felony counts against the pair, including securities fraud. Prosecutors alleged that Jarmin and Jordan had failed to inform new investors that developers had defaulted on loans made by RPL and that the pair had stopped paying dividends on investors’ loans to the company.

In 2015, prosecutors and the defendants’ attorneys reached a plea deal that reduced all seven felony counts to misdemeanors, but prosecutors later objected to the deal and the judge in the case eliminated the plea agreement and rescheduled the trial on the original charges.

Defense attorneys for the pair argued that the judge should not have overturned the original plea agreement, and that it should still be in force. The Appeals Court agreed and indicated that the Superior Court should either accept the plea deal, or allow the prosecutors to plead their case to the Appeals Court.

The Superior Court reinstated the plea deal and the Jarmin and Jordan were sentenced according to the terms of the original deal. As part of the plea agreement, the pair received no jail time, and was ordered to make restitution to the investors in the amount of $114,000.

Ventura County securities fraud lawyer


Securities fraud charges are complex, and criminal cases often involve plea agreements. If you’ve been accused of securities fraud, your first move should be to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney who will aggressively fight to get the charges against you reduced or dropped.
As this case shows, reducing the severity of the charges can have a major impact on sentencing and restitution in a plea agreement. Don’t risk your freedom on an inexperienced attorney or one who won’t fight for you in court.

Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura County securities fraud case.

Photo Credit: WoodleyWonderworks, via Flickr.com

Embezzlement Charges for Hospital Administrator
Embezzlement Charges for Hospital Administrator
A former hospital administrator in Santa Barbara County was charged with embezzlement after she allegedly misappropriated more than $200,000 from the Medical Staff Association at Cottage Hospital in Santa Barbara.

Prosecutors say that Pamela Cochran-Escalante is a former medical staff services supervisor who forged signatures and altered the association’s general ledger entries to disguise the theft. Cochrane-Escalante pleaded not-guilty to the charges in court in October.

She was released on her own recognizance pending trial, but the Court ordered her not to incur debt while awaiting trial. The embezzlement was discovered when Cochrane-Escalante unexpectedly retired immediately prior to an IRS audit of the organization’s books.

Ventura Embezzlement Attorney


Embezzlement can occur anywhere and anytime. Financial crimes –especially those that involve large dollar figures – grab headlines easily, but they’re rare. Most often, they’re the product of lax financial procedures. Sometimes these lax procedures can make these situations seem worse than they are.

If you’ve been accused of a financial or workplace crime like embezzlement, it’s essential that you contact an experienced embezzlement attorney like Robert Helfend immediately. Mr. Helfend has practiced law in Ventura County and throughout Southern California for more than 30 years. He has established a reputation for aggressive criminal defense, and he will be with you at every step of the judicial process against you.

He handles each client’s case personally, so your case will not be handed over to a less experienced criminal defense attorney. You will have the benefit of Mr. Helfend’s extensive criminal defense experience at each stage of the process. He will work aggressively to get the charges against you reduced or dropped, and will work toward productive resolutions that allow you to minimize or eliminate jail time.

Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura County embezzlement case.

Photo Credit: Kevin Dooley, via Flickr.com

Ventura fraud lands Canyon Lake man in jail
Ventura fraud lands Canyon Lake man in jail
A Canyon Lake man has pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud and three counts of grand theft in connection with a foreclosure fraud scheme he operated in Ventura.

Patrick Iturra, 46, promised clients that he could help them avoid foreclosure, and often took advance payments of thousands of dollars from them, even though he did nothing to help them avoid losing their homes. Iturra wasn’t the only person charged in the scheme. Robert and Rosalva Sanchez of Oxnard, were also indicted on grand theft and fraud charges pleaded guilty. They were ordered to serve 180 days in jail and make financial restitution to their victims.

The trio operated Mercury Business Group, which purported to offer financial services, including foreclosure avoidance, debt management, real estate investment services and credit education. The business operated out of a Pasadena address since 2009.

Ventura Fraud Lawyer


If you’ve been accused of fraud, grand theft or a similar crime, you should know that Ventura County fraud lawyer Robert Helfend is ready to take your case. Mr. Helfend has more than 30 years of experience in criminal defense, and takes cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California.

He handles each case personally, so you’ll always have the benefit of his extensive experience. His first priority will be to get the charges against you reduced or dropped. When that’s not possible, he will work with prosecutors to ensure that you benefit from the best possible resolution to your case.

Don’t risk your freedom on an inexperienced criminal defense attorney when you can work with one of the best, most aggressive defense attorneys in Southern California. Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura fraud case.

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