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Three Arrested on Loan Fraud, State Income Tax Charges

Released: January 14, 2010

Sacramento – Three individuals were arrested on numerous felony charges related to a loan fraud scheme, the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) announced.

Sedrak Dzhinanyan, 32, of Van Nuys, Lusik Mgshyan, 37, and her husband, Sargis Sargsyan, 37, both of Granada Hills, were arrested by officers from the Los Angeles County Police Department with assistance from FTB special agents. Dzhinanyan was arrested at the Van Nuys Courthouse where he was appearing on an unrelated criminal matter regarding grand theft and credit card fraud. Mgshyan and Sargsyan were arrested at their Granada Hills home.

According to FTB special agents, Dzhinanyan allegedly obtained two real estate equity loans through fraudulent means in 2007 to acquire more than $550,000. Dzhinanyan used the alias Hakob Ktikyan to receive nearly $300,000 from one lender and $250,000 from a second lender.

In addition to the fraud, Dzhinanyan failed to report the illegal income on his 2007 state income tax return. All income is taxable including income from illegal sources. Dzhinanyan owes the state more than $49,000 in unpaid tax. Interest, penalties and the cost of the investigation will be added to this amount.

Lusik Mgshyan allegedly abused her position of trust as a loan officer to assist in the fraud. Mgshyan and Sargsyan received more than $238,000 for their role in the fraud scheme. In addition, the couple failed to file their 2007 state income tax return reporting Mgshyan’s wages and the illegal income. They owe the state more than $16,900 in unpaid taxes. Interest, penalties and the cost of the investigation will be added to this amount.

Each was booked into the Van Nuys Valley Jail Wednesday, January 13. Bail for Dzhinanyan and Mgshyan is set at $1.38 million each. Sargsyan is free on $20,000 bail. Arraignment dates have not been scheduled.

The failure to file tax returns and underreporting of income are part of the $6.5 billion tax gap California faces each year. The tax gap is defined as the difference between the tax that is owed and the tax that is paid.

Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney Hilda Weintraub of the Real Estate Fraud Unit is prosecuting the case. This is a joint investigation between the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office and FTB.

For more information on other taxes and fees in California, visit www.taxes.ca.gov.