One of the state's largest bail-bond companies has been indicted on 42 felony charges as part of a major statewide investigation of alleged corruption in the industry, the Los Angeles County district attorney's office said Tuesday.
The charges handed down in November by the Los Angeles County Grand Jury against San Jose-based Bad Boys Bail Bonds include perjury, forgery and offering false evidence.
The Department of Insurance, the district attorney's office and other prosecutors in California alleged earlier last year that some bonding companies had been jeopardizing public safety for profits in California, enabling hundreds of criminal defendants to flee.
Court records indicated that some serious offenders have been granted bail bonds without sufficient collateral. Suspects who became fugitives included defendants charged with attempted murder, assault, burglary, drug trafficking and other serious offenses.
Defendants pay bondsmen a percentage of the bail. The bondsman then guarantees the full bail will be paid if the suspect fails to show up in court. Bondsmen's insurers are liable for the full bail if a defendant flees.
Prosecutors say some insurers have failed to pay, either because of insolvency or because they have found ways to delay payment.
Bad Boys Bail Bonds did not respond Tuesday to a request for comment on the indictments.
The indictments charge that Bad Boys committed perjury on multiple occasions by declaring falsely that it had carefully checked the background, records and whereabouts of people to whom it provided bail.
Bad Boys repeatedly presented material at legal proceedings that was "known to have been forged, fraudulently altered and antedated," but was offered as true, the indictments said.
The alleged offenses listed in the indictment purportedly occurred in 2002, 2003 and 2004.