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Man Sent to Prison for Insurance Fraud

SATICOY | West Ventura County Focus

July 17, 1997|DAVID GREENBERG

A 58-year-old Saticoy man has been sentenced to state prison after his conviction for insurance fraud in connection with three scams over seven years that netted him nearly $130,000.

Larry Gomez Cobos was sentenced to eight years and ordered to pay $129,287 in restitution after pleading guilty to charges of filing false workers' compensation claims in 1990, 1992 and 1994, according to Terence Kilbride, the senior deputy district attorney who prosecuted the case. All three claims concerned back injuries that Cobos claimed he had suffered on the job.

Ventura County Superior Court Judge Charles Campbell sentenced Cobos to one year on each of the first two counts and six years on the third because the crime occurred after the "three strikes" law took effect, Kilbride said.

"To any new felony conviction that occurs after the three strikes law was passed and the defendant has a prior serious felony, the new sentence will be doubled from what the normal sentence would be," Kilbride said.

That serious felony was a 1981 conviction in Santa Barbara on two counts of robbery and three counts of possession with the intent to sell drugs, he said.

Cobos, using a toy gun, robbed a drug dealer of $12,780 in cash as well as marijuana and the hallucinogenic drug PCP valued at between $200,000 and $300,000, according to Kilbride.

Cobos was sentenced to five years and was released after serving half the term, Kilbride said.

Campbell had the option of issuing two-, three- or five-year sentences for each felony conviction and opted for a three-year sentence on the 1994 charge, which was then doubled under the three strikes law, according to Kilbride.

In consecutive sentencing, a judge is limited to one-third of the "middle term" for all counts other than the one carrying the stiffest penalty--explaining why he issued one-year terms for the first two counts, Kilbride said.

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