|For Immediate Release
Case # 08CF2755
|Susan Kang Schroeder
Public Affairs Counsel
DOUGLAS NISSAN OWNER AND THREE MANAGERS ARRESTED AND CHARGED FOR DEFRAUDING CUSTOMERS AND BANKS IN THEFT CONSPIRACY AFTER YEAR-LONG INVESTIGATION
SANTA ANA – An owner and three desk managers of Douglas Nissan in Orange have been arrested and charged for an elaborate conspiracy to steal unsuspecting customer identities and defraud banks in the sale of used cars following a year-long investigation by the Orange County District Attorney’s Office (OCDA). Part-Owner Frank Ignacio Urbano, 54, Anaheim, and desk managers Luz Belem Corral, 26, Costa Mesa, Kevin Allen DeRosier, 28, Anaheim, and Marwan Abdellatif, 46, Lakewood, are charged with 43 felony counts of forgery, 31 felony counts of grand theft, one felony count of conspiracy to defraud another of property, and one felony count of conspiracy to commit a crime. Corral is charged with an additional felony count of perjury by declaration and faces a maximum sentence of 39 years in state prison if convicted. Defendants Urbano, DeRosier, and Abdellatif each face a maximum sentence of 37 years and four months in state prison if convicted. Each defendant is being held on $100,000 bail. They are expected to be arraigned Friday, Sep. 26, 2008, at the Central Justice Center in Center. The time and Department are to be determined.
The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) assisted in this investigation. Senior Deputy District Attorney Doug Brannan of the Economic Crimes Unit is prosecuting this case.
ORIGIN OF CASE AND SEARCH WARRANT SERVICE JULY 2007
In April 2007, the OCDA began investigating possible fraudulent activity at Douglas car dealerships. The OCDA discovered that between 2005 and 2007, 27 relevant identity theft police reports were filed with OPD regarding Douglas Nissan of Orange. More than 100 complaints had been filed with the DMV and Better Business Bureau about Douglas Nissan and the other dealerships for unfair business practices.
Investigators from the OCDA searched Douglas Nissan at 1140 West Katella Avenue in Orange on July 9, 2007. Evidence was seized including two computers, electronic data from four additional computers, and approximately 350 boxes containing approximately 12,000 car transaction dealer jackets. Each dealer jacket contained several documents including contracts, credit reports, applications, warranty and insurance information, and other documentation relevant to the sale or lease of a vehicle. The 77 felony charges in this case represent only the most egregious counts, focusing on 31 fraudulent transactions and representing a small percentage of the large volume of evidence.
Urbano is a minority share owner and general manager of Douglas Nissan responsible for day-to-day operations. Corral, DeRosier, and Abdellatif are desk managers who supervise dealership sales staff, secure documentation and financing for vehicle sales, and sign off on all car sale deals.
Arrest warrants were issued Sep. 23, 2008, for the four defendants. Urbano, Corral, DeRosier, and Abdellatif were arrested yesterday, Sep. 24, 2008, by investigators from the OCDA with assistance from DMV, OPD, and the County of Riverside District Attorney’s Office.