Fraud Conviction Lands Oxnard Man In Federal Prison
Fraud Conviction Lands Oxnard Man In Federal Prison
An Oxnard man who worked as a civilian purchaser at Naval Base Ventura County will spend nearly six years in prison for fraud. According to investigators, the man accepted bribes and kickbacks over several years. Beginning in 2008, the purchaser accepted cash payments from a Ventura County contractor who submitted phony invoices. The purchaser then approved payment for the invoices. Between 2008 and 2011, the man accepted about $375,000 in cash payments.

Later, the purchaser created a phony company to accept invoice payments by check from the contractor. In 2011, the purchaser began to accept checks from the contractor. In 2013, the purchasing officer also bought a maintenance company, and then began accepting phony payments through that company. Investigators determined that the man collected another $850,000 in fake-invoice payments.

The Ventura contractor pleaded guilty to conspiracy earlier this year. The purchaser admitted his role in collecting the phony payments and admitted that many of his invoices were fraudulent. In addition to fraud and conspiracy charges, the man also pleaded guilty to tax evasion and filing false tax returns.

The purchasing officer will spend 5 years and 10 months in jail and will be required to pay about $1.2M in restitution to the federal government.

Oxnard Fraud Attorney


When you face charges for fraudulent activity, hire an experienced fraud attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has 35 years of experience in criminal defense. He takes federal cases in any US district. He also takes state-level cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California.

Mr. Helfend manages every case personally and knows what it takes to provide a successful federal defense. His first priority is to reduce or eliminate the charges against you. When that’s not possible, he will work toward the best outcome for your case.

Working with an experienced federal defense attorney can make a major difference in 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 fraud case.

Photo Credit: Channone Arif, via Flickr.com

Identity Theft Sentence for Thousand Oaks Woman
Identity Theft Sentence for Thousand Oaks Woman
A Thousand Oaks woman received a sentence of two years in jail and four years of supervised release. Earlier, the woman pleaded guilty to six counts of grand theft for embezzling about $200,000 from two employers. She also pleaded guilty to one special allegation of Aggravated White-Collar Crime. As part of the plea agreement, the court dropped four counts of grand theft, one count of forgery and one count of identity theft. The court also dismissed 25 special allegations related to excessive loss and aggravated white-collar crime.

The woman worked as a bookkeeper for a local firm between 2012 and 2017. The woman wrote checks to herself and made unauthorized ATM withdrawals. She used the money to pay off student loans, pay credit card bills and pay for personal expenses. She also worked for a firm that manages a Ventura area golf course. In that position, she also wrote checks to herself and changed accounting software entries to hide the thefts.

The woman is currently in custody, but will return to court in early August for a restitution hearing related to the case.

Thousand Oaks Identity Theft Lawyer


When you face charges for identity crimes, hire an experienced identity theft lawyer like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has 35 years of experience in criminal defense. He takes cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California.

Police and prosecutors pursue identity fraud cases because they often lead to larger crimes. Identity fraud can include everything from forging someone else’s signature to stealing credit cards or identification.

You can be prosecuted for identity-related crimes in either state or federal courts. You can also be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony, depending upon the circumstances of the case. When you face identity theft charges, your best defense is an experienced, aggressive defense attorney who will fight for you in court.

Don’t rely on inexperience and don’t assume that a plea bargain is your best option. 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: William Grootonk, via Flickr.com

Ventura DUI Checkpoint a Bust
Ventura DUI Checkpoint a Bust
A DUI checkpoint in Ventura produced no arrests last month. Police operated the checkpoint from 8:00 PM Friday, June 28 to 3:00 AM Saturday, June 29. During its operation, Ventura police stopped 321 drivers, conducted 12 field sobriety tests and issued 1 citation.

At sobriety checkpoints, police are more likely to find unlicensed motorists and unregistered or uninsured vehicles than impaired drivers. Unimpaired drivers whose vehicles are impounded at checkpoints can expect to spend up to $4,000 to get their vehicles back. This includes impound fees and fines, and towing and storage costs.

Municipalities will argue that the number of vehicles they check – and not the number of arrests – gives value to DUI checkpoints. When drivers know that checkpoints are in operation, they are less likely to drive impaired. Active patrols give police a better chance to spot and stop impaired drivers, however.

California regularly uses sobriety checkpoints, despite limited evidence of their effectiveness.

Ventura DUI Lawyer


When you’re stopped for a DUI in Ventura, hire an experienced DUI lawyer like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has more than 30 years of experience in drunk driving defense. He takes cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California.

Most (about two-thirds) of drunk driving arrests in California result in a misdemeanor charge. Whether and how the prosecutor charges you depend entirely on the circumstances of your case. Certain circumstances – including a prior history of impaired driving, or collisions involving injuries or death – can result in felony charges against you. Even with a misdemeanor charge, you can expect a suspension of your driver’s license. This is an automatic process administered by the Department of Motor Vehicles, and it occurs at the time of the traffic stop.

The DMV does have a time-dependent process to contest a license suspension. The DMV’s process also differs completely from any judicial process. The Court can impose an additional suspension as part of your sentence. In addition, you could face jail time, fines, driving restrictions and other sanctions. The court may also require you to install an ignition interlock on your car.

Your best defense is to hire an experienced attorney to represent you in court. Do not attempt to represent yourself and don’t settle for 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 DUI case.

Photo Credit: Nick Fisher, via Flickr.com

Drug possession charge for Ventura woman
Drug possession charge for Ventura woman
A Ventura woman faces charges for drug possession after police arrested her for narcotics trafficking. A drug enforcement team served a search warrant on the woman’s home and also her vehicle. During the search, they found methamphetamine, heroin, and digital scales. They also found a large amount of cash, weapons and ammunition.

Prosecutors charged the woman with possession for sale of methamphetamine and heroin, possession of drug paraphernalia, and felony firearm possession. They also charged her with possession of ammunition and possession of a high capacity magazine.

Ventura drug possession attorney


When you face charges for drug crimes, hire an experienced drug possession lawyer like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has 35 years of experience in criminal defense. He takes cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California. In his more than 3 decades of practice, he has represented thousands of Californians.

Mr. Helfend manages every case personally. That means your case won’t be handed over to a less experienced attorney. In addition, Mr. Helfend has built a reputation for being an aggressive defense attorney. He will fight to get the charges against you reduced or dropped.

He is a top-rated criminal defense attorney in Southern California, recognized for his experience and his ability to defend his clients effectively. The right defense strategy is especially important in California. The state’s Three Strikes Law can put people with a previous felony conviction at a significant disadvantage. A second felony conviction can lengthen sentences and increase penalties. It can also put you one step closer to lifetime incarceration as a habitual offender.

Mr. Helfend’s strategies work to reduce or eliminate risk for you, and help you understand your legal position. He will always work toward the best possible outcome for your case, based on your circumstances. Don’t settle for an overworked, inexperienced defender, especially when your future is at stake.

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 case.

Photo Credit: opiateaddictiontreatment, via Flickr.com

Murder charge for man accused in fatal stabbing
Murder charge for man accused in fatal stabbing
Police arrested an Ontario man for a Ventura County murder in a restaurant parking lot last month. A group of car enthusiasts had previously been in the restaurant and moved to the parking lot when the business closed. The victim, a 23-year-old La Puenta man, became involved in a confrontation in the parking lot. According to police, the men knew each other, and the dispute was related to an unresolved issue.

The fight escalated into a physical attack, and the Ontario man stabbed the victim several times. First responders attempted to save the victim, but he died at the scene.

Police arrested the Ontario man, but the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office has not yet filed charges. Initially, the suspect was held on a $510,000 bail, but has since been released. Instead, prosecutors have requested additional investigation into the circumstances surrounding the dispute, and the events of the evening. A number of witnesses saw the fight and may provide additional context.

Ventura Murder Attorney


When you face charges for a homicide in Ventura County, hire an experienced murder attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has 35 years of experience in criminal defense. He takes homicide cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California.

A conviction for a first-degree murder can result in a life sentence with or without parole. It can also result in the death penalty, depending upon the circumstances of the case. Although the governor has issued a moratorium on executions, the death penalty is still available to prosecutors. That’s why your best defense strategy is to have an experienced, aggressive attorney on your side. In this case, the prosecutor is reluctant to charge the suspect immediately, based on existing evidence.

Homicide has no statute of limitations, so a different prosecutor many years into the future could decide to press charges. It’s crucial to have proper representation, and experienced defense counsel available to you at all times.

Don’t settle for inexperienced counsel and don’t rely on the hope that a possible murder charge will just “go away.” 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: James Case, via Flickr.com

Antitrust Sentence for Oakland Business Consultant
Antitrust Sentence for Oakland Business Consultant
A business consultant caught up in a wide-ranging Oakland antitrust case will spend one year in federal prison. The man, who is also the son of an Oakland City Councilman, participated in both bribery and bid-rigging schemes.

A jury convicted the man of conspiring to accept bribes and also accepting bribes to provide inside bidding information. The case revolved around federal Veteran’s Administration construction projects in the state.

The man’s co-conspirator in the first scheme worked for the California Department of Veterans Affairs. According to an undercover informant, the men agreed to accept 15% of the developer’s profits on Veteran’s Department projects. The payment would have been in exchange for receiving construction contracts. One of the affected projects was in Ventura County. The other was in West Los Angeles.

In addition, the man also participated in a separate bid-rigging scheme. In that plan, he submitted an artificially high bid for renovation work at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The high bid was meant to influence the selection of the winning contractor.

The defendant’s lawyer sought a house arrest sentence, however, the prosecution asked for a 2-year prison sentence. The judge settled on a one-year federal prison sentence. Following completion of his term, the man will also serve three years of supervised release.

Ventura antitrust lawyer


When you face charges for anticompetitive practices, hire an experienced antitrust lawyer like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has more than 30 years of experience in criminal defense. He takes federal criminal defense cases in any US District Court. He also takes state-level cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California.

The government bidding process makes a tempting target; however, prosecutors aggressively pursue people who attempt to take advantage of it. Convictions can result in long prison sentences, high restitution amounts and large fines. That’s why you need an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side. Mr. Helfend handles every case personally, so you’ll always receive the benefit of his extensive experience.

Don’t rely on an inexperienced attorney, and don’t assume that a plea deal is in your best interest. 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: gt8073a, via Flickr.com

Embezzlement Of Tips Lands Camarillo Restaurant Manager in Jail
Embezzlement Of Tips Lands Camarillo Restaurant Manager in Jail
A former restaurant manager will spend four years in jail for embezzlement . The man, who is a Camarillo resident, pleaded guilty to stealing tips from the restaurant’s wait staff.

The alleged thefts occurred between March 2014 and July 2017. The defendant worked as a restaurant manager and also a supervisor at the restaurant’s winery. To steal from the restaurant, the man manipulated the restaurant’s register system. He devised a way to make it appear that customers paid bills with phony gift cards. When customers paid in cash, he would void the payment, then keep the cash. He also stole cash tips from the wait staff.

In February, the man pleaded guilty to four counts of grand theft. Investigators estimate that the man stole more than $114,000 during his employment. The judge sentenced the man to 16 months of incarceration. He will then serve the remainder of his sentence on a supervised release. The judge also ordered the man to pay restitution to the restaurant and the affected servers.

Camarillo Embezzlement Attorney


When you face charges related to theft from your employer, hire an experienced embezzlement attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has 35 years of experience in criminal defense. He takes cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California. Mr. Helfend is a top-rated defense attorney and has represented thousands of Californians in that time.

Embezzlement is a crime of opportunity. These cases receive a lot of attention because they often involve large dollar amounts. While victims want to see justice done, “justice” means different things to different people. Often, the first priority for a victim is restitution. An experienced defense attorney knows that long prison terms frustrate opportunities for restitution. An aggressive attorney’s preferred strategy will involve getting charges reduced or dropped. When that’s not possible, the attorney will work toward a sentence that minimizes incarceration and maximizes restitution opportunities.

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: Esther17, via Flickr.com

Sex crimes charges for human trafficking suspects
Sex crimes charges for human trafficking suspects
Three men face sex crimes following their arrest for human trafficking in Ventura County. According to investigators with the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office, the men trafficked a 16-year-old girl around the state. The teen resides in Riverside County. Riverside County officials contacted the Ventura County Sheriff in May to report possible sex trafficking there.

Investigators determined that the girl was in the Newbury Park area. The men moved the girl to Bakersfield before deputies could arrest them. Following a short stay in Bakersfield, the girl moved to Madero County, then Fresno. Madero County Sheriff’s deputies found the girl and took her into protective custody. One of the suspects lives in Bakersfield; the second lives in Fresno. A third suspect lives in Newbury Park.

Ventura investigators learned that two different men brought the girl to Ventura County on two separate occasions in May. Deputies served a search warrant on the Newbury Park man’s home and found evidence to corroborate his involvement.

The Bakersfield suspect also faces charges of trafficking two other adult women. All three men are known gang members. One of the men has been released on a $100,000 bail. The Bakersfield suspect remains jailed on a $100,000 bail. The Fresno suspect remains jailed on a $110,000 bail. The Newbury Park and Fresno suspects face a felony charge of causing a minor to engage in commercial sex acts. The Bakersfield suspect faces a felony charge of human trafficking of an adult. The prosecutor will try all three cases separately. the suspects will return to court throughout July on matters related to their cases.

Newbury Park sex crimes attorney


Human trafficking for sex related crimes carries a stiff penalty. Following conviction, you could face as much as 20 years in prison and fine of as much as $500,000. In addition, you could be required to register as a sex offender for life. Lifetime sex offender registration can limit where you can live and work. It can also carry a stigma that will prevent you from re-integrating into your community. When you face charges for any type of sexual offenses, hire an experienced sex crimes attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has more than 30 years of experience in criminal defense. He takes sex crimes cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California.

Sexual offense convictions can have a devastating impact on your life. That’s why you need an experienced, aggressive criminal defense attorney by your side. Mr. Helfend will work tirelessly to get the charges against you reduced or dropped. When that’s not possible, he will work toward the best possible outcome from your case. Don’t rely on inexperience when your future is at risk.

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: Ira Gelb, via Flickr.com

Fraud Case Set in Fake Foreclosures
Fraud Case Set in Fake Foreclosures
A Riverside husband-and-wife team face charges of foreclosure fraud and filing false documents.

According to Ventura County prosecutor Gregory Totten, the pair targeted elderly Ventura County residents. The victims ranged in age from 66 to 90 years old. Allegedly, the pair created fake liens against properties worth millions of dollars. The phony liens clouded the owners’ titles to their homes. According to the prosecutor’s office, each of the victims lost more than $1M in the scam.

One suspect, a 66-year-old-woman, has pleaded guilty to one felony count of filing a forged or false instrument. At her sentencing on July 24, the judge will dismiss the remaining 7 felony charges.

Her partner, a 62-year-old man, will return to court on July 1 for a bail review. He is also scheduled to appear in court on July 16 for a preliminary hearing. The man is representing himself. Prosecutors have charged the man with one count of illegal foreclosure and six counts of filing false instruments. In addition to the felony counts, he also faces special allegations of causing losses exceeding $500,000.

The couple each remain jailed in lieu of a $1M bail.

Ventura Fraud Lawyer


When you face charges related to fraudulent actions, hire an experienced fraud lawyer like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has more than 30 years of experience in criminal defense. In his more than 3 decades of practice, he has defended thousands of Californians. He takes criminal cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California.

Fraud charges can be serious, especially when you face multiple counts, special allegations or sentence enhancements. That’s why you need an experienced, aggressive attorney who can help you navigate the legal process.

Don’t settle for inexperienced counsel and don’t attempt to represent yourself 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 fraud case.

Photo Credit: Jeff Turner, via Flickr.com

Identity Theft Suspects Busted For Parking Violation
Identity Theft Suspects Busted For Parking Violation
A Simi Valley Police officer attempting to enforce a handicapped parking violation collared two identity theft instead.

According to police, the officer noticed that a vehicle was illegally parked in a handicapped space at a local Target store. The officer observed the suspect park in the spot and then enter the Target store. The officer investigated the vehicle and noted a suspicious quantity of mail in the vehicle. Working with the store’s loss prevention officer, the pair discovered that the suspect and a companion attempted to use a stolen credit card in the store.

The man initially fled the store when the officer attempted to contact him. The officer also arrested the man’s companion without incident. The male suspect returned to the store, where the officer arrested him.

The male suspect faces two felony charges related to identity theft and driver’s license forgery. He also faces three misdemeanor charges for giving false information to a police officer, shoplifting and resisting arrest. In addition, he will have to address an out-of-county warrant for possessing more than 10 identities. He remains jailed in lieu of a $60,000 bail. He will return to court on July 1 for matters related to his case. The prosecutor has not yet filed charges against the female companion.

Simi Valley Identity Theft Attorney


When you face charges for identity-related crimes in Simi Valley, hire an experienced identity theft attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has 35 years of experience in criminal defense. He takes identity crimes cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California.

Police and prosecutors vigorously pursue identity theft cases, because they often lead to larger more lucrative convictions. When you face accusations of identity theft, your best defense begins with an experienced identity theft attorney.

An experienced attorney will fight aggressively on your behalf and will work to get the charges against you dismissed or reduced. That’s not always possible or realistic, but when it is, your attorney should not settle for less than that outcome. Don’t rely on inexperienced counsel and don’t attempt to represent yourself 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: Luke Jones, via Flickr.com