LOS ANGELES (KABC) —
District Attorney Jackie Lacey announced the convictions of several suspects in various immigration service scams that victimized more than 300 immigrants.
According to Lacey, her office’s Notario Fraud Unit has prosecuted eight major criminal cases since its inception in 2017.
The suspects, known as “notarios” on the street, often misrepresent themselves as attorneys.
“They collect high fees for legal services they cannot and do not provide,” Lacey said.
In a press conference on Tuesday, Lacey released the names and photos of four suspects who were convicted on felony charges that include grand theft, extortion, perjury and forgery.
According to authorities, Romina Aida Zadorian, Dalila Moreno, Augusta Gonzalez De La Cruz and Gregory Chavez took money from vulnerable immigrants, claiming to be either attorneys, special agents, or government workers who could expedite the processing of legal documents.
Prosecutors said these crimes are devastating to families who spend their life savings to gain legal status.
“Unfortunately these con artists know that not only will they give them everything they can to protect their families and themselves, but they will also be afraid to report,” Deputy District Attorney Ryann Jorban said.
Lacey said illegal immigrants don’t report because they are worried about being deported.
“But we want to encourage people to report to us. We take all complaints and that’s the way we take these con artists out of commission,” she said.
The public can report immigration fraud at (213) 257-2450.
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