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News Release

Monday, January 3, 2000

Media Relations

Counterfeit MTA Pass Manufacturer and Distributor

Monday, January 3, 2000

For the past six months Transit Services Section Detectives and the Revenue Protection Unit have been conducting an investigation of the counterfeiting and distribution of MTA fare media, bus passes. During the investigation, officers were able to identify the manufacturers as Pedro Sotelo and Tomiko Cash, and the main distributor as Amira Mogollon Cabeza.

On Thursday, December 30, 1999, Transit Services Section Detectives and officers from the Transit Bus Division's Special Enforcement Section arrested the counterfeiters and executed a Search Warrant in the 500 block of Boylston Street. Officers seized over five hundred items of evidence linking both suspects to the crime.

On Friday, December 31, 1999, Transit Services Section Detectives executed an additional Search Warrant in the 200 block of W. 8th Street. Officers seized over one hundred items of evidence linking suspect Cabeza to the distribution of counterfeit MTA passes and the sales of stolen fare media, bus transfers. A criminal history check revealed Cabeza to have an outstanding Felony warrant for Grand Theft under the aka of Angelica Marie Carasco.

Items of evidence (i.e., printer, paper, foil, comparisons of valid and counterfeit passes) will be displayed at the press conference. Attending the press conference will be: Commander Garrett Zimmon, LAPD Transit Group; Captain M. Wasson, LAPD Transit Rail Division; Paul Lennon, LACMTA Managing Director, Office of System Safety & Security; Daniel Cowden, LACMTA Director of Security; and Transit Services Section detectives and LACMTA personnel involved in the investigation or fare evasion.

Inquiries should be directed to the Media Relations Section at 213-485-3586.

For Release 3:10 pm PST
January 3, 2000