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City treasurer extorted by couple he called for massage, D.A. says

Two people have been arrested and charged with trying to extort money and property from the city treasurer in Hermosa Beach, who allegedly invited the couple to his house to perform a massage.

Gustavo Ceron, 29 and Yuritsi M. Garcia, 26, were arrested Tuesday by Hermosa Beach police and charged with a single count of attempting to extort money from City Treasurer David Cohn, according to Sandi Gibbons, a spokeswoman for the district attorney’s office.

Cohn apparently called the couple about a massage and invited them to his Hermosa Beach house, said Steve Johnson, the interim police chief. He said one of the suspects stole an iPad and then both tried to extort money from Cohn. Details remained sketchy.

The pair were arrested in Maywood, where they live, and booked on suspicion of theft and attempted extortion, Johnson said. Johnson would not disclose details about what the suspects were demanding from Cohn.

Johnson said he did not know the name of the massage service or how Cohn had learned of the pair.

Ceron and Garcia have pleaded not guilty to the charges, and remained jailed in lieu of $10,000 bail.

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-- Ruben Vives

 
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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.
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