Arrest of Counterfeit Suspect

November 14, 2000

Los Angeles – On Thursday, November 9, 2000, at approximately 9:30 p.m., Undercover LAPD Officers assigned to the Transit Group’s Revenue Protection Unit arrested Pedro Sotelo for the manufacturing and sales of counterfeit Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) bus passes. Pedro Sotelo was arrested approximately one year ago for the same violation and was on formal probation at the time of his arrest.

During a ten-month investigation, Officers were able to identify Pedro Sotelo as being the manufacturer of counterfeit MTA bus passes. A search by Officers revealed more than 5000 items of evidence used to produce the counterfeit bus passes. Approximately 400 counterfeit passes were recovered during this investigation which has the street value of more then $16,500.00. It was believed that this counterfeiting operation cost the MTA anywhere from $30,000.00 to $40,000.00 each month in lost revenue.

Sotelo is 30 years old and a resident of Los Angeles. His bail was set at $100,000.00.

For further information, contact Detective Tim Gipson at Transit Group, 213-922-3533.

This press release was prepared by Public Information Officer Jason Lee, Media Relations Section 213-485-3586.

For Release 5:20 pm PST
November 14, 2000