Los Angeles, CA – White collar crime is generally treated as less threatening than physically violent crimes, but white collar criminals often prey on their victims' deep seated fears in order to make a financial gain. Like blackmailers who threaten to uncover a victim's shameful secrets or phone or internet scammers fishing for their mark's personal information with the imagined threats of health scares or computer viruses. This week saw charges filed in a high profile extortion case in Los Angeles.
Leyla Ors, Joe Cavallo, and Emanuel Karl Hudson were charged with conspiracy after allegedly attempting to extort as much as $20 million dollars from a Saudi sheik in exchange for dropping rape charges against his son, Thamer Albalwi, 23. Ors, a German national in her early 30s, was working for Albalwi as a personal assistant when she accused him of rape in March. She claimed that Albalwi had held her captive in a condominium in Los Angeles and had raped her, beat her, and burned her with a cigarette. Albalwi was arrested and released on $3 million dollars bail.
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Los Angeles, CA – One of the great concerns of our time is how best to constrain police power. While we want law enforcement to have all the tools they need to effectively fight crime, we struggle with how best to ensure that they do not overstep their boundaries and invade people’s privacy or misuse their power for their own gain. Issues of police corruption and oversight played an important part in the trial of six current and former officers with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
On Tuesday, jurors issued a guilty verdict against Lts. Stephen Leavins, 52, and Gregory Thompson, 54; Sgts. Scott Craig, 50, and Maricela Long, 46; and Deputies Gerard Smith, 42, and Mickey Manzo, 34. The six defendants were charged with conspiracy and obstruction of justice after allegedly attempting to keep an FBI informant inside LA County’s jail system away from agents conducting an investigation into allegations of inmate abuse. Two of the defendants were also accused of attempting to intimidate the lead agent on the case into dropping the investigation.
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