A federal indictment has resulted in 99 defendants with 72 of them taken into custody during the week of February 14, 2011. Some of the accused are believed to be members of the street gang Armenian Power. The charges include bank fraud, murder, extortion, robbery, illegal gambling, conspiracy to traffic drugs, kidnapping and identity theft. 29 of them will be facing RICO charges. One of the indictments deals with bank fraud and identity theft charge. Personal identification was taken from individuals including their bank account information and the Defendants later posed as the account holder over the telephone. Delivery information and addresses were changed to order checks, and then the person’s signature was forged. Accounts were drained as the checks were cashed as requested by one of the leaders of the group. The investigation also described how AP (short for Armenian Power) also worked with the Mexican Mafia and African American gangs either for protection once in prison or to bribe bank employees to retrieve information. Federal prosecutors, the FBI, alongside Los Angeles Sherriff’s Department, Glendale and Burbank Police Departments, gave a statement on Wednesday regarding the investigation.
Criminal Law Updates by the Law Offices of Orange County Defense Attorney William W. Bruzzo (714) 547-4636