$65 Million Seized By Federal Agents From Los Angeles Garment District
D-bo, Sept. 10, 2014, 4:44 p.m.
More than $35 million in cash was found in bankers boxes at one downtown L.A. location during a massive federal raid Wednesday that recovered over $65 million in total. Nine people were arrested in connection with three federal indictments against them and the businesses with which they work, according to a spokesman for the U.S. Department of Justice.
One of the indictments described the torture of a U.S. citizen drug distributer by the Sinaloa Cartel at a ranch in Culiacan, Sinaloa, Mexico. “Victim A” was kidnapped, held hostage and beaten, shot, electrocuted, and water-boarded at the ranch in fall 2012, according to the indictment.
The victim incurred a “debt” to the cartel when 100 kilograms of cocaine he or she and two family members intended to distribute in America was seized by U.S. federal agents.
The two relatives were forced to pay $140,000 in cash ransom for “Victim A” to Q.T. Fashion, a clothing wholesale business on 12th Street, according to an indictment. Q.T. Fashion allegedly worked with a Mexican clothing firm called Maria Ferre to funnel the ransom money through 17 other Fashion District businesses to the cartel.
“Victim A” was released from the Sinaloa ranch when a payment was made in December 2012; the victim is currently in the U.S., federal officials said.
Q.T. Fashion owner Andrew Jong Hack Park, 56, of La Canada Flintridge; business manager Sang Jun Park, 36, of La Crescenta; and Jose Isabel Gomez Arreoloa, 49, of downtown L.A. were all arrested.
Maria Ferre, along with its owner and several employees, was also indicted. Three Maria Ferre employees from Sinaloa were wanted by authorities.