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One Of Four Defendants In $500K Ventura County Fairgrounds Theft Pleads Guilty

Friday May 26, 2023

     Updated---One of the four Los Angeles County men accused with stealing more than $500,000 from the Ventura County Fairgrounds last August has changed his plea to guilty.

     28-year-old Alexander Piceno of Baldwin Park was in court Thursday and entered guilty pleas to three felonies, Misappropriation of Public Money, Commercial Burglary Over $950, and Conspiracy to Commit a Crime.

     He is being held in the Ventura County Jail with no chance of bail pending his sentencing on June 28th.

     At one point, Piceno was described as the "insider" in the crime.

     Meanwhile, the combined preliminary hearing for the other three defendants started Friday and will resume on Tuesday.

     56-year-old Rafael Morales of La Puente, 44-year-old Carlos Aranda of Los Angeles, and 55-year-old Jesus Rios of El Monte, have all pleaded not guilty.

     The men are accused with stealing the cash from the fair administration building at 10 West Harbor Boulevard on August 10th of last year.