Southern California Identity Theft Hoodlum Gets Prison, Huge Restitution Bill

Until they were nabbed by federal agents, a prison-based crime group consisting of individuals with nicknames like “Horse,” “Homicide” and “Showtime” operated a five-year aggravated identity theft and bank fraud scheme that stole more than $8 million in Orange, Los Angeles and Riverside counties.

A federal grand jury in Southern California ended the crime spree with a 99-count, 20-person indictment in February 2011.

This month, Robert Haskell, a middle-level player in the scam, learned his punishment.

Assistant United States Attorney E. Martin Estrada sought a 37-month sentence and $640,000 in restitution.

Federal judge David O. Carter agreed with the restitution demand but gave Haskell (AKA “Bone”) a 30-month prison trip. 

The hoodlum is now housed in the Metropolitan Detention Center (MDC) in Los Angeles.

So far, law enforcement officials have won the following prison terms in the case:
Oganes Tangabakyan (AKA “Hovo”), 51 months; his whereabouts are a mystery;
Alphonzo Strong (AKA “Trub”), 39 months; he's presently housed in a Fort Worth, TX prison;
Hyworth Rutanhira (AKA “Ike”), 27 months; he's presently housed in a Victorville prison;
Derrick Chatton (AKA “Doc”), 20 months; he's presently housed in a Lompoc prison.

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R. Scott Moxley’s award-winning investigative journalism has touched nerves for two decades. An angry congressman threatened to break Moxley’s knee caps. A dirty sheriff promised his critical reporting was irrelevant and then landed in prison. The U.S. House of Representatives debated his work. Federal prosecutors credited his stories for the arrest of a doctor who sold fake medicine to dying patients. Moxley has won Journalist of the Year honors at the Los Angeles Press Club; been named Distinguished Journalist of the Year by the LA Society of Professional Journalists; and hailed by two New York Times Magazine writers for his “herculean job” exposing Southern California law enforcement corruption.

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