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Couple Pleads No Contest in Mail Fraud Scheme

By Lookout Staff

February 7 -- A Southland couple who used a Santa Monica rented mail box to bilk more than 1,200 victims pleaded no contest last week to charges that they ran a nationwide mail fraud operation.

Maciej Noworyta and Brenda Chaidezdiaz were each convicted on 11 misdemeanor counts including five counts of grand theft, five counts of false advertising, and one count of conspiracy. Their pleas were taken by Judge Bernard Kamins of the LAX courthouse.

The couple is alleged to have used a mail box at the UPS Store on Wilshire Boulevard to receive payments from victims around the country who were charged $20 each to sign up for work stuffing envelopes at home, according to the City Attorney’s office.

It is alleged that thousands of victims spent hundreds of thousands of dollars and received nothing, or, at most, worthless documents.

The terms of their conviction include:

  • Total fines of over $80,000;
  • 600 hours of hard labor community service each;
  • Full restitution to all known victims;
  • Nine days in L.A. County Jail (already served);
  • Three years’ probation.

Noworyta and Chaidezdiaz were arrested at their Chino Hills home on December 2; the City Attorney’s office filed charges later that month.

“Consumers should always be wary of employment offers that require them to pay money to sign up,” said Deputy City Attorney Adam Radinsky. “If you’re working for them, they should only be paying you.”

Radinsky also warned that all solicitations – whether by mail, telephone, or email – should be treated with healthy skepticism. “If they contact you, and not the other way around, be very careful,” said Radinsky.

The pair are alleged to have operated under a number of different names, including Ad-Ventures International, Adriatica, Apex Publications, Asta Publishing, Executive Publications, Infomedia, Mayflower Publishing, Nancy Rossini, Riva Sirmione and Tri-Star Publishing.

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