SANTA ANA, Calif. – Two men have been charged in connection with a complex scheme to use fraudulent social security numbers, drivers licenses and employer information to illegally buy dozens of vehicles and attempting to buy 90 more vehicles illegally. The total loss exceeds $1.2 million.
Arsenio Stanley Pierre, 27, Riverside and Marcus Darren Ginyard, 43, Moreno Valley have been charged with a combined 14 felony counts of making false financial statements and 14 felony counts of unlawfully taking a vehicle with sentencing enhancements for aggravated white collar crime over $100,000.
Pierre and Ginyard were arrested in Rancho Cucamonga in February by detectives and investigators from the Orange County Auto Theft Task Force (OCATT), along with members of the United States Secret Service (USSS) and the Los Angeles County Taskforce for Regional Autotheft Prevention (TRAP), arrested two suspects in Rancho Cucamonga.
The investigation began in December 2018 and involved the fraudulent purchase/theft of 37 vehicles with an additional 90 attempted thefts. Early in the investigation, it was discovered the United States Secret Service (USSS) was conducting a similar investigation on the same suspects. The OCATT and the USSS combined their investigations. TRAP assisted with the joint investigation and helped during the take down and interviews.
Pierre and Ginyard are accused of working together and fraudulently purchasing 37 newer high end vehicles. The fraudulent information used to purchase each vehicle included California driver licenses, out-of -state driver licenses, social security numbers, pay stubs, utility bills, and/or cell phone bills. The defendants are accused of using their real names and DOB, along with fraudulent SSN, fraudulent employer, and income information, to purchase half of the vehicles. Pierre and Ginyard are also accused of purchasing the remaining half of the vehicles using fictitious profiles of individuals who do not exist. The majority of the fraudulent social security numbers used belong to children. Federal charges are pending and the suspects will be turned over to federal custody in the near future.
The federal case will include the 37 vehicles in addition to the 90 attempted thefts, which will bring the total loss amount to approximately $3 million. This case was investigated by California Highway Patrol Investigator David Navarro, who is assigned to OCATT.
OCATT’s collaborative approach, which allows law enforcement to assist in investigations with allied jurisdictions, has resulted in a 55 percent decrease in auto theft in Orange County since the taskforce was created in 1993.
OCATT is a multi-jurisdictional law enforcement program comprised of personnel from the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, California Highway Patrol, Orange County Sheriff’s Department, National Insurance Crime Bureau, Department of Motor Vehicles – Investigations Unit, Brea Police Department, Buena Park Police Department, Fullerton Police Department, and Tustin Police Department.
Investigators work to identify career auto theft criminals and investigate suspicious businesses by searching for “chop shop” activity. OCATT investigates sophisticated auto theft rings that are not related to common car thefts. The task force documents various trends of auto theft including Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) switches, title washing, and rental car fraud, trains local law enforcement to identify these trends, and uses digital media to create public awareness and communicate tips to the public preventing auto theft.
In 2018, OCATT initiated 309 investigations, assisted agencies in 713 investigations, and recovered 251 stolen vehicles valued at more than $3.5 million.
Questions regarding the investigation may be directed to OCATT Investigator Dave Navarro at (714) 532-9645.