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Prosecutors Charge 54 for Identity Theft at L & M Optical West

Prosecutors Charge 54 for Identity Theft at L & M Optical West
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Feb 14, 2009 4:00 PM PST    Text size: 
VALENCIA, Calif. — Los Angeles prosecutors have charged 54 employees of L & M Optical West with identity theft after an alleged large-scale tax evasion scheme was uncovered after an investigation of the company’s employment records.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department executed a search warrant Feb. 5 at L & M Optical Disc West, one of the adult industry’s busiest replication facilities, and arrested 55 employees that appeared to be using false documents to obtain employment.

Charges were dropped against one of the 55 arrested for using a single fake document to be hired because the law states more than one must be used.

The arrests effected more than a quarter of L & M’s approximately 200 employees.

Police began their investigation after 19 residents, most of them near the company’s replication facility in Valencia, received overdue tax bills from the IRS on income they didn’t earn.

A police spokesperson said further investigation is expected to uncover more cases.

Sgt. James Anderson, the officer in charge of burglary and fraud for the sheriff’s Santa Clarita office, told the Los Angeles Times that L & M managers should have detected the scheme, but that it wasn’t yet clear if the alleged fraud, perpetrated on such a large-scale was “orchestrated internally” or if the company itself had any culpability.

Calls to L & M Optical seeking comment went unanswered.

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