Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Twenty indicted in fake marriage, drug trafficking scheme

Twenty people were indicted by federal authorities in a scheme in which foreigners allegedly used sham marriages to obtain green cards to further a drug dealing operation, authorities said Wednesday.

Dubbed Operation Paint it Black, the 19-count grand jury indictment unsealed Wednesday alleges crimes related to distribution of ecstasy, marijuana cultivation and a scheme in which foreign nationals paid tens of thousands of dollars to marry American women so they could obtain permanent U.S. residency.

The investigation targeted members and associates of a San Gabriel Valley-based street gang called the Red Door, according to the U.S. attorney's office. About 18 members of the gang were arrested Wednesday and agents are continuing their search for two others.

Named in the indictment were Kyle Carriere, 23, Henry Chen, 21, Sylvia Ho, 22, and Katrina Yu, 21, all of Rowland Heights; Tony Tuan Dam, 22, of Huntington Beach; Andy Lai, 28, of El Monte; Richie Le, 26, of Los Angeles; Lawrence Liu and Michael Chen, both 22 of Diamond Bar; Nathan Nwobi, 36, of Culver City; Brian Ly, 22, and Seong Chun Tan, 32; both of Alhambra; Edward Su, 22, of San Gabriel; Jun Paz, 25, of West Covina; Steven Settino Siino, 22, of San Dimas; Allen Chen, 26, of Arcadia; Jane Kim, 23, of Yorba Linda; Chun Chih Hu, 29, who resides in unincorporated Los Angeles County; Angela Kim, 22, of Los Angeles; and Feng Ye, 38, of Flushing, New York.

During the course of the two-year investigation, authorities seized seven firearms, more than 12,500 ecstasy pills, 2,230 marijuana plants and a Lamborghini.

-- Andrew Blankstein  

Comments () | Archives (20)

More illegal aliens dedicated to destroying our country by working the system. I'm so tired of the nonsense.

more illegals...send them home!!!

2 year investigation to catch 18 people? How many agents were involved in this? Sham marriages are more common these days. American women in the lower middle class are willing to marry people who are here illegally for lump sum and monthly support. I have heard of many Asian Indian men et involved in these schemes so that they can get their green cards. For women, this is reliable revenue source. And then they move on to the next man in the line.


see it just not the latino's anymore. Send them back home and let their host country deal with them!

Nice, Operation paint it black, going after the red door gang. Tip of the hat to the Rolling Stones..........

Will they get deported ?

Will they get deported?Send them back home and let their host country deal with them? Good grief;look at the names!These are American citizens.

The Lambo is what they really wanted... Property seizures are what drug laws are all about.

The chinese are the biggest welfare recipients in the USA. These people should be investigated, just like the BELL corrupt people.

Will the American woman also be investigated to see if they reported the money as income? Not reporting income to the IRS could mean jail time. I would like to make a bid on the Lamborghini though. Anyway deporting these folks may only be a temporary solution, they probably return on the next flight in with different names. Their own country rather have them distribute the drugs here then in their own country. Our illegal population finds a great source of income from our drug user population which is obviously huge. If the insane folks here go after the drug users hard and heavy as they go after cigarette smokers we may even see some real benefits. Instead of shutting down cigarette manufacturers and throwing more employees in unemployment based on research that indicate smoking could (not is) be harmful we should find a solution to fight the drug user addiction.

Just because they have foreign sounding names does not mean they were not born in the United States.

With that, they need to go to jail whether they are immigrants or not or if their last name was Johnson or not.

Congratulations with the arrest of this gang. Although the arrest is great it would be of public interest to know the cost of a two-year investigation for the city. One thing that it does not make of much sense is the confiscation of such expensive car vs. not much of a drug?

Wow, it's amazing how all the posters are so hateful. It's not the aliens that are destroying the country, it's the actual citizens. If anything, asian immigrants have one of most successful statistics for any race. Have you ever seen an asian person on welfare or homeless? If you have it's an extremely rare incident. Of course It's obviously wrong that they're getting citizenship illegally but at the same time, it's the citizens who are at fault for doing this sort of dealing. Also, by being actual citizens, they're liable to pay taxes, which our country needs. There is no justification and the gang members should face the strict hand of the law.

So this is the American dream. They come here to continue their criminal ways. Let's hope they fully prosecute the Americans who married these persons. Maybe revoke their American citizenship. That would be appropriate.

When are we going to stop this filth from coming into our country?

We need a new government, and we need to halt immigration entirely, deport all illegals - and quite a few of the legals who lied on their applications.

regarding John's post below "The chinese are the biggest welfare recipients in the USA. These people should be investigated, just like the BELL corrupt people."

Maybe you're just being ignorant, but if you checked your facts you'll see that statistics nationwide do not agree with your comment.
And with regards to the illegal immigrants, to me, regardless of if you're asian, hispanic, or any other race i think they should be sent back if they are here illegally. As for investigating these "people", i do hope you're not suggesting that ALL asian people should be investigated for being corrupt.

Ignorance and discrimination is still well and alive in the good old USA! Just took the internet and the protection of ones computer screen to bring it out of people!

*Takes a deep breath* Yum!! Love the smell of ignorance in the morning!


@Jon, John, Peter

Ignorance must be bliss.

Typical idiots posting here the problem is not the immigrants its the predators that are trafficking drugs and fake papers, but off course idiots will always look right past the drug pushers and fraudsters to concentrate on some low level immigrant that is not providing drugs and is not ripping of the system with fake credit cards...

I guess its always easier to beat up on the weak and defenseless


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
Have a story tip for L.A. Now?
Please send to newstips@latimes.com
Can I call someone with news?
Yes. The city desk number is (213) 237-7847.


Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: