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Sting Operations

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April 28, 2005 | From Associated Press
A former British clothing merchant was convicted Wednesday of attempting to sell shoulder-launched missiles to what he believed was a terrorist group planning to shoot down airliners. The federal jury reached its verdict in its second day of deliberations, finding Hemant Lakhani guilty on all five counts. Lakhani, 69, was arrested in 2003 at a hotel room near the Newark airport after getting caught in a sting operation in which undercover operatives posed as terrorists and arms dealers.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 17, 2005 | Caitlin Liu, Times Staff Writer
After the judge publicly scolded prosecutors, a former LAPD officer convicted of fondling a woman and improperly touching another while in uniform was sentenced Wednesday to 90 days in custody. The sentence outraged victim advocates in the courtroom, who thought of it as a slap on the wrist. One of the ex-officer's victims left in tears. "He held a position of public trust, and he abused that position," said Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Anne H.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 15, 2005 | From Times Staff and Wire Services
An FBI sting led to the arrests of seven men on suspicion of seeking sex with boys, and of an eighth man, an Orange County minister, on suspicion of distributing child pornography, the FBI said Monday. The seven men were charged Saturday in U.S. District Court with unlawful travel to engage in sex with a minor, said Laura Eimiller of the FBI's Los Angeles office. During the investigation, the FBI set up a fake travel company that offered a trip to Mexico to meet boys for sex, Eimiller said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 1, 2005 | From Times Wire Reports
A convicted child molester was arrested for allegedly using California's new database of registered sex offenders to troll for dates, San Mateo County officials said. Glen Westberg of Cupertino was accused of illegally using the online Megan's Law site after police set up a sting operation with help from another sex offender whom Westberg allegedly contacted. The website, unveiled by the state Department of Justice on Dec.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 28, 2004 | Solomon Moore, Times Staff Writer
The old doctor told his wealthy acquaintances that his treasure trove of paintings and sculptures had been bequeathed to his family by an Indian maharajah and that his late father had left a will stipulating that he could never sell them through art auction houses. So Vilas Likhite, 66, allegedly proposed selling his collection of paintings by Jackson Pollock, Jasper Johns, Willem de Kooning and other modern masters directly to wealthy individuals he met in Southern California.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 17, 2004 | Lance Pugmire, Times Staff Writer
A five-month law-enforcement sting targeting auto body shops in Riverside and San Bernardino counties led to 38 arrests for attempted insurance fraud, a rampant problem in California that has driven up the cost of car insurance, authorities said Thursday. Undercover investigators visited 66 repair shops in the two counties and told shop employees that they intended to file false insurance claims for complete, new paint jobs on vehicles that only needed minor work.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 27, 2004 | Richard Winton, Times Staff Writer
A Los Angeles police officer caught in a sting was charged Thursday with extorting $500 from a merchant to report a case of immigration fraud, authorities said. Edwin Lee, 34, was arrested with marked money he received from the victim in a transaction monitored by the Los Angeles Police Department's Professional Standards Bureau, according to the LAPD. The reported victim, a Korean immigrant woman, went to police after Lee allegedly solicited the money.
NATIONAL
August 11, 2004 | John J. Goldman, Times Staff Writer
The spiritual leader of an Albany mosque was ordered held without bail Tuesday after a prosecutor said his name, U.S. address and telephone number were found in a notebook in a terrorist camp in Iraq. Assistant U.S. Atty. David M. Grable said the listing referred to Yassin M. Aref, 34, as "Commander." U.S. forces destroyed the camp -- operated by Ansar al Islam, a militant group linked to the Al Qaeda terrorist network -- in June 2003.
NATIONAL
August 7, 2004 | John J. Goldman, Times Staff Writer
Mohammed M. Hossain liked to picture himself as a classic example of thrift and the American dream. He once told an interviewer that as a high school student in Bangladesh he looked at a map and imagined coming to America. "Since I have been here, opportunity kissed my feet," he said. "Hard work has done the rest."
NATIONAL
August 6, 2004 | Mary Curtius and John Goldman, Times Staff Writers
Two leaders of a storefront mosque were arrested in a government sting operation after they allegedly agreed to launder money they were told would pay for a shoulder-fired missile to be used to assassinate Pakistan's ambassador in New York.
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