LOS ANGELES (CNS) - An Inglewood man who allegedly posed as an immigration attorney and charged thousands of dollars for legal services is facing grand theft and other charges, and authorities are asking the immigrants he allegedly defrauded to step forward.
Edgardo Antonio Guerrero, 68, who operated the now-defunct Oficina Guerrero on West Manchester Boulevard, was charged last week with multiple state counts of grand theft, unlawful practice of law and offering immigration services without a required bond, according to court papers.
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said Tuesday that Guerrero defrauded undocumented immigrants and their families seeking lawful permanent residence in the United States. None of Guerrero's ``clients'' obtained legal status as a result of his actions, the AG added.
A man who answered the telephone at the listed number for Oficina Guerrero said the consultancy was permanently closed.
``No one, regardless of status, should have to deal with fraudulent behavior while seeking legal advice,'' Becerra said. ``At a time when the Trump Administration stokes fear and desperation in communities across the State, the California Department of Justice is committed to protecting families from unscrupulous practitioners who would exploit them for personal gain.''
Guerrero was arrested Thursday, booked into the Los Angeles County jail and is being held in lieu of $80,000 bail, the AG said.
``Our department stands at the ready to educate, defend, and speak up for the residents of the County, especially the most vulnerable among us,'' said Brian J. Stiger, director of the Los Angeles County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs. ``If you believe you are a victim of fraud, regarding immigration services or any transaction, we are here to help.''
Those who paid Guerrero for immigration assistance and believe he may have defrauded them are encouraged to contact the DCBA by calling (800) 593- 8222.
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