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Homeland Security Support Unit

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 16, 2006 | Stuart Pfeifer, Times Staff Writer
The state attorney general is investigating Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca's Homeland Security Support Unit, a group of local businessmen who volunteered to assist the department with investigations and donated money to the sheriff's political campaigns. The department has suspended the unit, which had about 50 members, pending the outcome of the state investigation and its own internal affairs review, sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore said Friday.
ARTICLES BY DATE
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 29, 2007 | Stuart Pfeifer, Times Staff Writer
A state attorney general's investigation of a private group associated with Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca is focusing on its charitable fundraising, according to documents obtained by The Times. Members of the Homeland Security Support Unit -- made up of local businessmen, many of them contributors to Baca's political campaigns -- have been asked to supply the attorney general with evidence of any payments made to the group or its leaders.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 29, 2007 | Stuart Pfeifer, Times Staff Writer
A state attorney general's investigation of a private group associated with Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca is focusing on its charitable fundraising, according to documents obtained by The Times. Members of the Homeland Security Support Unit -- made up of local businessmen, many of them contributors to Baca's political campaigns -- have been asked to supply the attorney general with evidence of any payments made to the group or its leaders.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 16, 2006 | Stuart Pfeifer, Times Staff Writer
The state attorney general is investigating Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca's Homeland Security Support Unit, a group of local businessmen who volunteered to assist the department with investigations and donated money to the sheriff's political campaigns. The department has suspended the unit, which had about 50 members, pending the outcome of the state investigation and its own internal affairs review, sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore said Friday.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 7, 2006 | Lance Pugmire and Evelyn Larrubia, Times Staff Writers
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department is investigating how identification cards bearing Sheriff Lee Baca's signature came to be issued to members of a citizen support group. Undersheriff Larry L. Waldie said Thursday that Baca neither authorized nor signed the 48 photo identification cards that tire salesman Gary Nalbandian, head of Baca's "Homeland Security Support Unit," passed out to local business owners and political donors who made up the group.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 17, 2006 | Stuart Pfeifer and Lance Pugmire, Times Staff Writers
Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca is revoking photo identification cards issued to campaign donors and other members of his volunteer "Homeland Security Support Unit" amid questions about whether the cards were issued illegally, a sheriff's spokesman said Thursday.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 22, 2006 | Lance Pugmire, Times Staff Writer
A Riverside County supervisor on Tuesday withdrew a proposal to prevent the sheriff from issuing honorary badges to the public after a majority of supervisors opposed taking action until the state attorney general reviewed the practice.
OPINION
March 31, 2006
HERE'S A RADICAL SUGGESTION for sheriffs who want to thank campaign contributors and other influential friends: Look them squarely in the eye, shake their hands and say with all sincerity, "Thank you." If they insist on lingering, clap them on the shoulder and say, "Really." In Southern California, the gratitude is more likely to take the shape of an official-looking badge, a seat on some meaningless panel and, in one county, gun permits and the power of arrest.
OPINION
July 12, 2012
"Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me," they used to say on the late Andy Griffith's eponymous 1960s TV show. Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca, whose folksy straight-man earnestness reminds us a bit of Griffith's Sheriff Andy Taylor, has actually been fooled three times when it comes to the issuance of official-looking badges or ID cards to non-department personnel. So here's a review: In 1999, Baca set up a special reserve program intended to allow celebrities and other notables to receive a badge and a gun in the name of boosting community relations.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 16, 2009 | Andrew Blankstein
An executive with a security and investigations company, who also served as a reserve deputy with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, was arrested Wednesday morning on suspicion of fraud after his firm allegedly failed to pay more than $9 million in workers' compensation insurance premiums, prosecutors said. The Los Angeles County district attorney's office charged Ousama "Sam" Karawia, 45, president and chief executive of International Services Inc.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 14, 2006 | Stuart Pfeifer and Lance Pugmire, Times Staff Writers
Supervisors in Los Angeles and Riverside counties on Monday expressed alarm that their sheriffs had distributed honorary badges or identification cards to more than a dozen campaign supporters. Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael Antonovich said he wanted to know whether identification cards that Los Angeles Sheriff Lee Baca authorized for members of his "Homeland Security Support Unit," a group that included many of his donors, were a violation of county law.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 13, 2006 | Stuart Pfeifer and Lance Pugmire, Times Staff Writers
On paper, Gary Nalbandian would appear to be an influential figure in Southern California law enforcement. He has served as director of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Homeland Security Support Unit, the Riverside County Sheriff's Executive Council and the Bureau of Justice for the San Bernardino County district attorney's office. But Nalbandian is not a professional cop.
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