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Articles Posted in Theft

Jorge Velasquez Fernandez, Luis Rico Humberto, Ignacio Fernandez Mendez, Gabino Rodriguez Perez and Marco Antonio Mendoza will all be arraigned on Thursday in Fullerton for the alleged theft of over 50 Toyota Tacomas in Orange and Los Angeles County. These 5 men, who are residents of Anaheim and Orange, had an auto theft ring which involved stealing the trucks from Los Angeles County, changing license plates and forging new titles and then selling them to unsuspecting Orange County buyers for $5,000-$10,000. After the men were caught, some of the cars were recovered and returned to their rightful owners if the insurance company had not already compensated them.

In 2008, there was a 19% drop in auto thefts in Orange County compared to 2007. In California, the rate dropped about 12% to about 199,766 cars with an estimated value of around 1 billion dollars. About 87% of the cars were found and returned.

These 5 men will likely be charged with receiving stolen property, unlawful taking of a vehicle and grand theft. They will need experienced defense attorneys to assist them in reducing their charges and their sentences.

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Westminster police responded to a typical disturbing the peace call last week–but instead of finding disgruntled family members, they fell upon a herd of wicker reindeer in the living room, yards of Christmas lights, faux Christmas trees, several snowmen and many inflatable Santa Claus figures. According to the L.A. Times, it all seemed just a little much to police, even for the most devoted holiday fanatic.

Then police remembered the theft reports. For weeks, residents of a Westminster neighborhood had been making reports of missing holiday decorations to police. Westminster police found a stockpile of holiday decorations in the home, on the roof and in the backyard. Police had to use two city trucks and a police truck to take all the property to the police station.

The Grinch, aka Vuong Pham, faces felony charges for grand theft and possession of stolen property.

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The weak economy has forced people to find creative ways to supplement their income. The Los Angeles Times reports that a surge in the price of copper has produced an outbreak of theft of copper wires from light poles. And, according to reports, there have been at least eight thefts in the Hollenbeck area since August– jeopardizing the lighting and safety in the community.

Copper prices peaked at $4.06 a pound earlier this summer but have dropped to $2.53 a pound. According to a representative from The L.A. Department of Power and Water, interference with power distribution and transmission systems not only destroys city lights, thieves also risk their own lives.

Anyone with information can call Hollenbeck detectives at (323) 526-3000. Callers can also use a 24-hour toll-free number, (877) LAWFULL (529-3855), send an anonymous text message with a cell phone to “CRIMES” or visit www.lapdonline.org.

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