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Trial opens for man accused of robbing men he met via Craigslist

September 20, 2011 |  8:19 am

Photo: Angel Pena Ayala. Credit: Hermosa Beach Police Department A man accused of robbing men he met through Craigslist personals ads is on trial in Torrance.

Angel Pena Ayala, 25, was arrested last year on suspicion of committing several crimes, including kidnapping for carjacking, residential robbery and carjacking with the use of a firearm, authorities said.

According to the Daily Breeze, Deputy Dist. Atty. Ethan Milius told jurors in his opening statement Monday that two of Ayala's alleged victims had responded to an ad Ayala allegedly placed on Craigslist.

A West Hollywood resident who met up with Ayala believing they had arranged a sexual encounter through Craigslist testified Monday that Ayala pulled a gun and robbed him, the Breeze reported.

Another victim was a Hermosa Beach resident looking for sex online.

In one incident, Ayala allegedly ordered a victim to drive to an automated teller machine and forced him to withdraw money.

The victim was released and Ayala allegedly drove off in the man's car, prosecutors said.

Ayala was identified as a suspect through fingerprints from the recovered vehicle, authorities said.


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-- Abby Sewell

Photo: Angel Pena Ayala. Credit: Hermosa Beach Police Department