Friday, November 7, 2014

AZMEX I3 7-11-14

AZMEX I3 7 NOV 2014

Note: Gotten very little media in AZ. Video at link.

Mother of fallen Mesa police Sgt. Brandon Mendoza sends letter to President Obama
Nohelani Graf
11:00 PM, Nov 6, 2014
5:02 AM, Nov 7, 2014
mesa | southeast valley

MESA, AZ - The mother of a fallen Mesa police officer is trying to get President Obama's attention again as he vows to move forward with immigration reform.

Mary Ann Mendoza is the mother of Sgt. Brandon Mendoza who was killed in May by a wrong-way, drunk driver who also died.

Raul Silva Corona reportedly crossed the border illegally, was charged with assault and burglary in Colorado and released rather than deported.

"The man who killed my son would have been eligible for the amnesty program even though he had two felony charges against him in '94." Mendoza said.

She wrote to the President in May, shortly after her son's death, and is following up with a second letter she feels is more eloquent while still making a firm point.

Her hope is to meet with President Obama to share her personal story of loss, and that of so many others she has met, at the hands of an illegal immigrant repeat offender.

"I'm not going to let his death be in vain, something has to be done in remembrance of him." Mendoza said.

She says she believes in a path to citizenship for families who are trying to better their lives but she'd like to see a no chance rule for illegal immigrants who are caught committing a new crime.

She also believes car sales should be outlawed for someone who can't legally get a license.

Mendoza isn't sure she'll get a response the second time around but that won't stop her from trying to effect meaningful change in the law.

She is also working to keep her son's legacy alive by helping organize an annual community dinner that Sgt. Mendoza created with the Boys & Girls Clubs of the East Valley.

The Mendoza Thanksgiving Dinner will be held November 20 from 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. at 221 West 6th Avenue in Mesa. Call 480-844-0963 to donate or become a volunteer.


PD: Phoenix auto body shop owner staged crashes, collected claims

Posted: Nov 06, 2014 2:21 PM MST
Updated: Nov 06, 2014 2:27 PM MST
By Phil BensonCONNECT

The owner of a Phoenix auto body shop and another man were arrested Thursday on suspicion of staging car accidents and collecting on fraudulent insurance claims.

Guillermo "Willie" Altamirano, 33, who owns Champion Auto Body, was a key member of an organized crime syndicate that allegedly staged crashes to collect at least $200,000 in fraudulent claims, Arizona Department of Insurance investigators said.

The group reportedly relied on forged drivers' licenses from Mexico and Guatemala plus disposable cellphones and prepaid credit cards to purchase auto insurance under fictitious names.

Acting on a tip from Farmers Insurance, an undercover operation began in April at the 1536 West Broadway auto body shop.

Arizona Department of Insurance agents took an undercover vehicle into the shop for collision-related repairs. Agents had a pretext policy on the vehicle, which was supplied for the investigation by Farmers Insurance and the National Insurance Crime Bureau.

Altamirano took over the claim on the vehicle and allegedly caused additional damages to the vehicle to offset the deductible on the policy.

Farmers Insurance issued a check for $3,625.83 under the name of Champion Auto Body, as well as the name used by the undercover agent whose signature was forged when the check was cashed.

In another incident, Altamirano, using a fictitious Mexico driver's license under the name of Victor Delgadillo, filed a hit-and-run claim with State Farm. He reported that his vehicle, a 1988 Volvo, was damaged by a hit-and-run driver while it was parked at the YMCA parking lot at 67th Avenue and Campbell.

State Farm paid Champion Auto Body and Victor Delgadillo $4,122.23 on the claim, investigators said. Altamirano was charged with conspiracy, assisting a criminal syndicate, fraud schemes, theft and forgery.

Rigoberto Lara-Corral, 48, the suspected ringleader of the operation, was also arrested and booked into jail on six counts ranging from conspiracy and participating in a criminal syndicate to forgery and identity theft.

Lara-Corral is accused of conspiring with others to submit fraudulent insurance vehicle claims against several companies. Lara-Corral is accused of supplying vehicles, fraudulent Mexico drivers' licenses, prepaid credit cards, prepaid cell phones and forged Arizona motor vehicle titles.

Lara-Corral, an undocumented Mexican National, is in the U.S. illegally awaiting a deportation hearing.

A third man, Juan Alejandro Villa, 25, was arrested Sept. 24 for his alleged participation in the ring, which included filing at least five false claims worth nearly $20,000.

The investigation is ongoing and more arrests are expected.

Officers from the Arizona Department of Public Safety and the Phoenix Police Department assisted in making the arrests on Thursday, which occurred early in the morning at three locations.

State Farm and Farmers Insurance cooperated in the investigation.

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