Identity Theft Cases Down At IRS
Identity Theft Cases Down At IRS
The Internal Revenue Service says that it reduced identity theft related to fraudulent tax returns by nearly half since 2014. According to the agency, investigators prevented thieves from filing almost 1 million fake tax returns in the most recent tax year.

Agency records show that fraudulent filings peaked in 2014, when scammers successfully filed more than three-quarters of a million phony returns. The IRS now flags major discrepancies in taxpayer filings from year to year to help identify potentially fraudulent returns. Preparers must also do more to properly identify filers before submitting their returns. The agency also moved the deadline for employers to file wage data with the IRS. With more timely wage data in hand, the agency can spot problematic returns more easily.

Identity thieves favor the Earned Income Credit, so the agency made changes to its process for handling EIC claims. This year, filers claiming the EIC saw their refunds delayed until at least mid-February. The delay provided more time for the agency to identify both fraudulent filings and identity theft among low income wage earners. The agency also aims to prevent fraudulent filers from misappropriating a filer’s identity.

Ventura Identity Theft Lawyer


Identity theft is always taken seriously, but the federal government actively pursues people who file fraudulent tax returns. If you’re facing an identity theft prosecution, you need the assistance of an experienced identity theft attorney like Robert Helfend.

Mr. Helfend has practiced criminal defense in Ventura County for more than 30 years. He knows what it takes to defend his clients successfully. If you’re facing criminal charges, make the right choice for yourself by hiring an experienced, aggressive 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 identity theft case.

Photo Credit: Michael Seery, via FreeImages.com

Thousand Oaks Identity Theft Arrest Busts Gas Theft Ring
Thousand Oaks Arrest Busts Gas Theft Ring
Thousand Oaks police arrested a Van Nuys man for mail theft and identity theft. As a result of the identity theft arrest, they also discovered a connection to a Los Angeles-based gasoline theft operation.

A witness reported seeing the driver of a commercial truck stealing mail from a Thousand Oaks mailbox. Police located the driver of the truck and arrested him following their investigation. They searched the vehicle and discovered stolen mail, multiple gift cards and drug paraphernalia.

Thousand Oaks police impounded the truck. A further inspection of the vehicle revealed four makeshift diesel fuel tanks inside the bed of the truck. The tanks could each hold 200 gallons of fuel.

Police believe the man erased the magnetic stripes on the gift cards, then recoded them with stolen credit card information. He used the duplicate credit cards to pay for the fuel, then later resold the fuel to gas stations at a discounted price. Officers also found incriminating surveillance video footage showing the man stealing mail, and frequenting neighborhoods where residents reported mail thefts.

Prosecutors charged the man with one felony identity theft count and five misdemeanors, including mail theft and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Thousand Oaks Identity Theft Attorney


If you’re arrested for identity theft in Thousand Oaks, your first call should be to an experienced identity theft attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend practices criminal defense exclusively in Ventura County and throughout Southern California. He takes identity theft cases defense in Thousand Oaks.

His first priority will be to get the felony charges against you reduced or dropped altogether. This is an important step because felony convictions can result in longer sentences or even lifetime incarceration, thanks to the state’s Three Strikes Law. If that’s not realistic, he will work to ensure the best possible outcome for your case.

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/murder case.

Photo Credit: Ines Hegedus-Garcia, via Flickr.com

Fraud Suspect Arrested In Ventura
Fraud Suspect Arrested In Ventura
Ventura police arrested a woman suspected of fraud, identity theft, grand theft, perjury, drug possession for sale and insurance fraud. An identity theft victim reported that someone used her identity to rent an apartment. The same person also applied for and received more than $10,000 in state welfare benefits.

Investigators obtained a search warrant for the apartment, and arrested the suspect there. At the apartment, they collected evidence that linked the suspect to other identity thefts. As a result of the search, they also believe the suspect sold drugs from the home.

Ventura Fraud Attorney


Fraud is usually a financial crime. In this case, the State of California is the victim. The state investigate and prosecutes misappropriation of welfare benefits because most welfare funds come from the federal government. The state could likely lose federal welfare funds if they do not fully investigate and prosecute benefit theft. If a prosecutor accuses you of fraud of any type, you should seek the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney like Robert Helfend.

Mr. Helfend aggressively defends his clients, regardless of what they’ve been accused of. When you hire Mr. Helfend, you will work directly with him to develop your defense. He will work tirelessly on your behalf because you must offer the best possible defense in court.

Mr. Helfend takes cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California. He has more than 30 years of practice experience exclusively in criminal defense. In that time, thousands of Californians chose Mr. Helfend to provide aggressive, thorough defense and counsel. Don’t rely on an inexperienced criminal defense attorney, and don’t attempt to defend yourself. When you’re confronted with an aggressive prosecution, you must counter with an aggressive defense.

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 fraud case.

Photo Credit: US Department of Agriculture, via Flickr.com

Identity Theft, Drug Possession Arrests in Ventura
Identity Theft, Drug Possession Arrests in Ventura
Ventura Police arrested three men and charged them with a variety of drug offenses and identity theft. Investigators from the department’s Street Crimes Unit served a search warrant on a Ventura home. They had information indicating that the residents conducted methamphetamine sales from the home.

During the raid, police recovered about an ounce of methamphetamine, a small amount of heroin and a weapon. They arrested three occupants at the time of the search. Prosecutors charged one of the home’s occupants with felony methamphetamine sales and identity theft. A second occupant of the home faces a possession for sale charge. Police are holding the third occupant of the home on five outstanding warrants.

City code enforcement officials are also investigating substandard building conditions at the residence.

Ventura Identity Theft Lawyer


California’s Proposition 47 reduced the severity of certain drug offenses. The law still allows felony prosecution of certain offenses – including possession for sale, and possession of some drugs. Further, prosecutors look for other opportunities to prosecute felonies not covered by Proposition 47, including identity theft. The threat of prosecution for more serious felonies explains why you need to hire an aggressive, experienced identity theft lawyer like Robert Helfend.

Mr. Helfend has defended thousands of Californians in his nearly 35 years of practice as a Ventura criminal defense attorney. Unlike the service you’ll find in a larger, less personal law firm, you’ll work directly with Mr. Helfend on your defense. Your attorney’s attention to detail can make the difference when the court hears your case.

Don’t settle for less than the best. 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: Judith E. Bell, via FreeImages.com

Homeless man arrested for Ventura identity theft
Homeless man arrested for Ventura identity theft
Ventura police arrested a homeless man last month on suspicion of identity theft following social media tips. According to police, the man stole credit cards belonging to two local senior residents.

The man removed the credit cards from the victims’ purses while they shopped. Surveillance cameras captured images of the man using the credit cards at local retailers. Police posted the surveillance footage on social media sites, hoping to generate clues about the thief’s identity.

Tipsters identified the suspect, but since he has no permanent address, he evaded arrest for a period of time. Police finally located him at a local motel. Police interviewed him and later arrested him for the thefts.

Ventura Identity Theft Attorney


If you face identity theft charges, hiring an experienced identity theft attorney is the first step in building your defense. With more than 30 years of experience in criminal defense, Robert Helfend provides exceptional court representation and counsel for his clients.

Both the state and federal courts prosecute identity theft cases. At the state level, you can face a misdemeanor or a felony offense, depending upon the circumstances of your case. A savvy criminal defense attorney will work immediately to get the charges against you reduced or dropped. He or she will also fight aggressively for your rights.

Your attorney choice can literally be the difference between incarceration and freedom, so it makes sense to choose a well-respected, experienced criminal defense attorney to represent you. Mr. Helfend is both well respected and exceptionally experienced in criminal defense representation. If you’re facing criminal charges, don’t go it alone.

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: Lance Robotson, via Flickr.com

Identity Theft Suspects Arrested in Ventura
Identity Theft Suspects Arrested in Ventura
Six people were arrested in Ventura for a variety of offenses, including identity theft, domestic violence, drug offenses and gang-related activities. US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) made arrests as part of a larger immigration sweep operation.

The entire operation netted arrests of 161 people in Southern California. According to ICE, more than 90% of those arrested have previous criminal convictions. The agency reported that those arrested came from 13 different countries. The majority of those arrested came from Mexico. Other arrestees were from Central and South America, Africa, Australia, Asia and the Caribbean.

The operation primarily targeted foreign nationals with criminal convictions and gang affiliations. It also targeted people who re-entered the country after deportation or disregarded an order to leave the country. ICE conducted the entire operation. According to the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office, ICE officials did not inform them of the operation.

Ventura Identity Theft Lawyer


If prosecutors charge you with identity theft, you need the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney like Robert Helfend. Both the state and federal courts prosecute identity theft. Depending upon your circumstances, you may be charged in either court. Additionally, prosecutors can charge you with a misdemeanor or a felony. The distinction is important because felony convictions in California can have significant consequences.

Federal authorities take an interest in identity related crimes because they are a “gateway” to more serious offenses. While some identity crimes support illegal immigration, others simply facilitate illegal monetary gain.

If you’re facing theft charges involving identity in either federal or state court, don’t attempt to defend yourself. Since Mr. Helfend handles each case personally, he will work directly with you on your defense. Don’t rely on an inexperienced criminal defense attorney to protect your freedom. Work with an attorney who will fight aggressively for your rights and freedoms.

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: Diane Herr, via FreeImages.com

Ojai Identity Theft Suspect in Court
Ojai Identity Theft Suspect in Court
A man arrested last August on suspicion of identity theft was back in court this week. Jacob DeGrande, 46, is a transient with a history of mail theft and identity theft.

DeGrande was arrested in August following a string of mail thefts in Ojai. A resident reported that several checks had been stolen from his mailbox. Ventura County Sheriff’s detectives discovered that the checks had been cashed in several cities in Ventura County, including Ojai, Oxnard, Thousand Oaks and Ventura. The detectives were able to obtain video surveillance of the suspect.

Patrol officers recognized DeGrande from the video footage and arrested him in early August because he had been acting suspiciously. At the time of his arrest, DeGrande was found in possession of hundreds of pieces of mail belonging to others, checks, check-forging equipment and blank check paper. In addition, DeGrande was charged with mail theft and a drug offense. DeGrande was arrested for identity theft in 2009 and 2013. He pleaded guilty to a single felony charge following his most recent arrest.

Identity Theft Attorney Lawyer


If you’ve been arrested for identity theft or any other felony, you need the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has practiced criminal defense exclusively for more than 30 years, and takes cases in Ojai and throughout Southern California.

A history of felony convictions in California can put you at risk of receiving a life sentence under the Three Strikes law. Avoiding felony charges becomes an important part of your defense strategy, but only a skilled defense lawyer can get charges against you reduced or dropped. Don’t risk your freedom.

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: Wayne Stadler, via Flickr.com

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

Identity Theft Arrest in Ojai Burglary
Identity Theft Arrest in Ojai Burglary
An Oceanside man was arrested in connection with an Ojai burglary in October. He was also charged with vehicle theft and identity theft.

According to police, Jonathan Jessop, 37, broke into an Ojai home and stole credit cards, which he later used to buy more than $10,000 worth of merchandise. He also stole a vehicle from the home. Jessop used the credit cards at home improvement stores in Ventura, Los Angeles and San Diego counties before he was arrested. Police used surveillance videos from the stores to identify Jessop. He was arrested in San Bernardino County in late November after briefly fleeing from police. Police recovered the stolen vehicle, which Jessop had been using.

Jessop is a transient and has a series of arrests on his record. He has a past criminal record that includes burglary and drug possession. He was charged with three counts of burglary, multiple counts of identity theft and grand theft. His bail was set at $500,000.

Ojai Identity Theft Attorney


If you’ve been arrested for identity theft, burglary or any similar charge, Ojai identity theft attorney Robert Helfend is ready to take your case. Mr. Helfend has provided exceptional criminal defense in Ventura County and throughout Southern California for more than 30 years.

He has represented thousands of Californians who face criminal charges, and works hard to get the charges against his clients reduced or dropped. Mr. Helfend has established an excellent reputation among prosecutors, attorneys and judges as an aggressive defender of his clients’ rights.

Don’t risk your freedom on an inexperienced attorney, and don’t rely on a firm whose attorneys will pass your matter on to less experienced defense counsel. 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: Alan Cleaver, via Flickr.com

Three charged with Simi Valley murder
Three charged with Simi Valley murder
Three people were arrested and charged with a Simi Valley murder that occurred in 2009. Two of the suspects, husband and wife Ronald and Idee Scholz, were arrested in Coeur d’Alene Idaho and extradited to California. The third suspect, Simi Valley resident Glenn Sires, was also arrested.

According to police, victim Janice Richardson at one time lived with Idee Scholz. Scholz had stolen Richardson’s identity while the two lived together. Initially, police believed that Richardson, a known drug user, had died from a drug overdose. Later, friends of Idee Scholz shared details of Richardson’s death that convinced police to reexamine the case. Upon reexamination, policed determined that Richardson’s residence had been staged to make it appear as though she had accidentally overdosed.

Idee and Ronald Scholz left the area and moved to Idaho, where they remained until the time of their arrest. Investigators do not know why the trio killed Richardson

Simi Valley murder attorney


Murder is the most serious accusation California prosecutors can level against a person. Depending upon the circumstances of your case, you could face the death penalty, life in prison with or without parole, or a significant prison term. The severity of a murder sentence means that you must have the best possible representation throughout the judicial process against you. You need an experienced Simi Valley murder attorney like Robert Helfend.

Robert Helfend has practiced criminal defense exclusively in Ventura County and throughout Southern California for more than 30 years, and you will not find a more dedicated, more experienced murder attorney. Don’t gamble with your future.

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 murder case.

Photo Credit: Clare Black, via Flickr.com