SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - A Pomona man has been arrested after a detailed investigation into what was called a phoney fire inspection scam. Several businesses were reportedly cheated out of money this year.
The crime spree covered many communities in Southern California and into Nevada. Warnings were out to hundreds of businesses.
A press release from the District Attorney's office has further details:
Santa Barbara County District Attorney Joyce E. Dudley announced today that Robert Lorin Musich was arrested by Santa Barbara County District Attorney Investigators on September 1, 2016 in Pomona, California.This arrest was related to the alleged fire inspection scam about which the Santa Barbara County District Attorney's Office and Santa Barbara County Fire Department issued a public alert notice on August 9, 2016. The intention of that alert was to warn our community about an alleged scam in which local businesses were receiving false invoices for fire inspections services that were not actually performed.On August 17, 2016 following an investigation conducted by the Santa Barbara County District Attorney's Office, the District Attorney filed an 11 count felony complaint against Robert Musich. The complaint alleged 10 counts of forgery (for forgeries committed in Santa Barbara County) and one count of grand theft as part of a continuous scheme committed against 834 victims throughout California. The aggregate value of the loss was over $200,000. Concurrent with the filing of the complaint, a $245,000 bench warrant was issued for the arrest of Mr. Musich.The Santa Barbara County Fire Department, Ontario Fire Department, Pomona Police Department, Cal Poly Pomona Police Department, West Covina Police Department, Nevada State Attorney General's Office, Lake Havasu Police Department, and the United States Postal Inspector all assisted the Santa Barbara County District Attorney's Office with the investigation and apprehension of Mr. Musich.If convicted of all charges, Mr. Musich faces a maximum of 11 years, 8 months in state prison. Mr. Musich is currently at the Pomona City Jail; he will remain there until he can be transferred to the Los Angeles County Jail and then to the Santa Barbara County Jail. No arraignment date has been set at this point.