3 adult men charged with staging freeway incidents in Southern California

Three males accused of staging 15 incidents on freeways to bilk insurance plan companies in Southern California past 12 months had been billed this 7 days, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office stated.

The allegedly staged mishaps still left 21 persons injured, together with a few men and women who had extreme injuries, Alex Karkanen, assistant head deputy for the District Attorney’s Automobile Insurance policies Fraud Division, claimed Tuesday, Aug. 31. The incidents happened from January to September 2020, mostly on a number of freeways in Los Angeles County. One circumstance concerned a crash in Orange County.

“What drives me insane is if you happen to be driving on the 405 Freeway that working day wherever they choose to have an accident, you’re putting people’s lives at danger,” Karkanen claimed.

Usually, the three adult males would travel alongside one another in the very same vehicle, but not in each and every case, he mentioned. The driver would lower in entrance of an additional auto and slam on the breaks to trigger the crash, according to Karkanen.

“They get an older car or truck, they’re driving it on the freeway and they cut right in front of another automobile,” he stated. “Usually, it is industrial, from time to time not, but they’re on the lookout for somebody they believe has insurance policies.”

1 man had to escape out of his burning car following one of the crashes and suffered from burn up accidents, Karkanen explained. One more gentleman had his leg crushed and a further had significant back accidents from the staged accidents, he explained.

Some of the incidents occurred in the valleys on the 405 and 101 freeways, in addition to the 5 Freeway in downtown Los Angeles, Karkanen reported. Some were being also on the 605 and 91 freeways.

A California Highway Patrol officer who recently underwent teaching by the California Office of Coverage on how to place a prospective staged accident noticed some of the warning signs in a person of the early incidents, Karkanen said.

Charges ended up filed Monday versus Eduardo Retana, 25, Ausencio Gomez, 46, and Victor Valle-Diaz, 55, all from Los Angeles.

Retana was going through 11 counts of assault with a deadly weapon and 10 counts of insurance policy fraud Gomez was billed with 10 counts of assault with a fatal weapon and 9 counts of coverage fraud and Valle-Diaz was billed with eight counts of assault with a deadly weapon and 4 counts of insurance plan fraud.

The 3 males were being accused of defrauding insurance businesses of practically $330,000, the District Attorney’s office claimed.

Staged incidents come about pretty normally, but Karkanen said it’s uncommon for this to happen on the freeway. Committing these crimes on a freeway is horrifically dangerous, he added.

If an individual experienced died because of the staged mishaps, Karkanen claimed they would have probably faced murder costs.