Los Angeles Area Licensed Vocational Nurse Charged with Felony Grand Theft

On May 1, 2017, investigators with the California Department of Consumer Affairs’ Division of Investigation obtained an arrest warrant for licensed vocational nurse Josell McNeil-Dawkins.

McNeil-Dawkins was charged with one felony count of grand theft by embezzlement.

McNeil-Dawkins was investigated by the Division of Investigations’ Investigation and Enforcement Unit – Chatsworth Field Office after she was terminated by her employer, a home health agency.

From December 2015 to February 2016, McNeil-Dawkins was paid to provide in-home patient care for an infant.  McNeil-Dawkins failed to provide the care and instead falsified records in order to obtain payments for services she had never provided.

McNeil-Dawkins turned herself into the Los Angeles County Court on May 5 and pleaded not guilty to the charge.  She appeared in court on May 18 and her next court appearance is scheduled for July 6, 2017 at 8:30am.

The Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians is reviewing the case and will take disciplinary action against McNeil-Dawkins’ license as appropriate.


Licensed Vocational Nurse Charged in Embezzlement Scheme

Southern California woman allegedly falsified employment records for monetary gain.

PrintRuth Green, of Lancaster, has been charged with one felony count of grand theft embezzlement and 15 misdemeanor counts of falsification of records for creating false and fraudulent time cards and medical records to obtain wages from her employer.

Green, a licensed vocational nurse (LVN), was hired to provide in-home nursing care for a child, four days a week, seven hours a day, which she failed to do.  Family members reported that Green was not coming into the home to care for the child as scheduled.

The Department of Consumer Affair’s Division of Investigation (DOI) Chatsworth Field Office investigated the allegations and time-clock records revealed that Green was working as a nurse at a skilled nursing facility on the dates she reported working at the child’s home. DOI’s investigation found that Green allegedly falsified records over a four-month period to show she was present at the child’s home for 43 days when she was not.

Charges were filed by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.    Green’s next court appearance will be in Los Angeles Superior Court on May 4, 2016.


DOI Investigations Round Up – September and October

The goal of protecting consumers is paramount to the staff of the Department of PrintConsumer Affairs’ Division of Investigation (DOI).  DOI works closely with District Attorneys’ Offices and other law enforcement agencies to ensure that goal is met.

Below are updates on three previously posted cases which were investigated by the staff of the Investigation and Enforcement Unit’s San Diego Field Office, Chatsworth Field Office and the Health Quality Investigation Unit’s – Tustin Field Office.

Dr. Jeffrey Joel Abrams

On September 25, 2015, a San Diego physician who sexually assaulted female patients – one victim was eight-years old – and took explicit photographs of them with his cellphone at an El Cajon clinic for low-income patients, was sentenced to one year of house arrest and five years probation.  Also, Dr. Jeffrey Abrams, 68, must register as a sex offender.  Abrams’ license to practice medicine has been suspended by the Medical Board of California since October 2014.

Read previous story here.

Hector Menjivar

A Southern California man known as “Doctor Hector” was convicted of practicing veterinary medicine without a license.  On October 7, 2015, Hector Menjivar was sentenced to serve 30 days in county jail, 36 months of probation, complete 500 hours of community service, attend 16 animal cruelty counseling program sessions and he must avoid the Holiday Humane Vet Clinic in North Hollywood.

Read previous story here.

Kim Anna Arvdalen

The owner of  The Chocolate Day Spa in Orange County, who was charged with conspiring and aiding and abetting in the unlicensed practice of medicine, entered a guilty plea on September 24, 2015.  Kim Arvdalen is required to pay restitution in the amount of $8,000 and serve 100 hours of community service.  Arvdalen will also be required to serve three years of informal probation.

Read previous story here.


Undercover Operation Nets Man Practicing Veterinary Medicine without a License

Print

A Southern Californian man was charged with a criminal misdemeanor last month for allegedly posing as a veterinarian.

After receiving a consumer complaint alleging negligence, the Veterinary Medical Board commissioned the Department of Consumer Affairs’ Division of Investigation (DOI) to conduct an investigation of the activities of Hector Menjivar. An undercover operation conducted by the DOI’s Chatsworth Field Office revealed that Menjivar was practicing veterinary medicine, including performing surgeries, without a license.  Menjivar, who identified himself as “Doctor Hector,” was seeing patients after-hours at his veterinary clinic in North Hollywood. Menjivar is the owner of Holiday Humane Society Veterinary Clinic, but is not a licensed veterinarian.

Following the undercover operation, DOI investigators issued a misdemeanor citation to Menjivar for the unlicensed practice of veterinary medicine.  The Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office subsequently charged Menjivar with one misdemeanor count of practicing veterinary medicine without a license. Menjivar could face up to one year in jail, if convicted.

The Veterinary Medical Board will pursue disciplinary action, as appropriate, against any licensee involved in the unlicensed practice of Menjivar.


Preliminary Hearing Set For Southern California Man Facing Felony Charges

PrintA southern California man has been charged with 11 felonies after an investigation revealed he was illegally using licenses belonging to an Architect and Professional Engineer.

An investigation by the Division of Investigation’s (DOI) Chatsworth Field Office into Juan “Gary” Padilla Alzona, of Torrance, revealed he used license numbers that did not belong to him in order to portray himself as a licensed professional. The California Architects Board received numerous complaints that Alzona was posing as an architect and due to the serious nature of the allegations, the Board forwarded the case to the DOI for criminal investigation. One victim reported a loss of more than $55,000.

For approximately two to three years, Alzona operated a business called Sol Lunar, in Venice, through which he posed as a licensed professional. He illegally used license numbers belonging to an Architect and a Professional Engineer along with forged professional stamps and signatures to submit building plans to the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety. Alzona is not licensed as an Architect or Professional Engineer.

Alzona appeared in the Los Angeles Superior Court to face felony charges for identity theft, submitting false information to a public agency, forgery, grand theft, and forging an official seal. He pled not guilty and has a preliminary hearing scheduled for April 16, 2015.

The Department of Consumer Affairs urges consumers to verify license information before allowing anyone to perform professional services. Licenses can be verified here.


Fake Pest Control Service Company Operator Convicted of Four Felonies

A southern California man who impersonated a pest control service company operator and scammed elderly victims has been convicted of four felonies and faces two years in prison.

Eldad Syton was convicted last week in the Los Angeles County Superior Court of one felony count of burglary and three felony counts of theft from an elder. Syton was advertising as a pest control service company operator when in fact he is not licensed by the Structural Pest Control Board to provide those types of services. As part of his scheme, he targeted elderly victims and entered into contracts with them to provide pest control services. He would then convince victims additional work was needed and entered into larger contracts for work that was never performed. It is estimated his victims lost more than $350,000.

The conviction is the result of an investigation conducted by the Division of Investigation’s Chatsworth Field Office, Los Angeles Police Department, Burbank Police Department, Whittier Police Department, and Santa Monica Police Department.

The Structural Pest Control Board initially received the complaint about Syton and due to the serious nature of the allegations, the Board forwarded the case for criminal investigation.

Syton will appear in court on March 18, 2015 for a restitution hearing.

Read past stories about this case:

Los Angeles Police Department
California Statewide Law Enforcement Association