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3 Plead Guilty to Falsifying Smog Checks Certificates

March 18, 1993|MARTHA L. WILLMAN | TIMES STAFF WRITER

GLENDALE — A Glendale auto repair shop operator and his two nephews have agreed to serve jail sentences for falsifying smog check certificates, authorities said, while operators and technicians at three other Glendale shops are scheduled for hearings next month on similar charges.

All of the shops and people involved allegedly gave the cars, many of which were from dealer or taxi fleets, clean bills of health when they actually had flunked the test or in some cases hadn't even been tested.

In a sentence agreement before a preliminary hearing last week, Sarkis Manvelyan, 51, operator of Confidence Auto Repair at 3947 Foothill Blvd., pleaded guilty to eight felony counts of perjury and altering computer data in order to falsify smog certificates.

Also pleading guilty were brothers Albert Abo Manvelyan, 34, and Alfred Afo Manvelyan, 30.

Each of the felony counts carries a maximum penalty of three years in state prison. But according to the prosecutor, Deputy Dist. Atty. Robert Miller, Sarkis Manvelyan, a resident of Sunland, has agreed to serve 150 days in County Jail. Albert Manvelyan of Glendale and Alfred Manvelyan of Tujunga will each be sentenced to 90 days in County Jail.

Miller said the agreement also calls for all three to be placed on three years' probation during which they will be prohibited from operating smog check equipment or offering brake and headlamp inspections.

The three are scheduled to be formally sentenced April 8 before Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Gordon Ringer.

The Manvelyans were among about 40 auto repair shop operators and mechanics in Los Angeles County who were arrested in December and charged with felony violations, prosecutors said. Hearings also are scheduled in the next few weeks for Glendale operators and licensed technicians at three other shops--C.D. Crill & Son Automotive at 351 W. Cypress St., Happy's Mobil at 100 S. Chevy Chase Drive, and Shahinian Unocal at 475 W. Colorado St.

The Glendale shops were among 23 smog check stations targeted in the sweep, conducted by a state task force that included representatives of the state Bureau of Automotive Repair and Air Resources Board. Authorities said the shops together issued more than 116,000 smog certificates and estimated that more than 80% were fraudulent.

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