A Southland couple has pled no contest to charges that they ran a nationwide mail fraud operation in which they made false promises to victims around the country and used a Santa Monica mail box to receive payments.Last week Maciej Noworyta and Brenda Chaidezdiaz were each convicted on eleven 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.Noworyta and Chaidezdiaz were arrested at their Chino Hills home on December 2, 2005 and taken into custody after federal investigators discovered their operation. The pair sent out mass mailings offering work-at-home employment, using false promises and testimonials from fictitious individuals. People who sent in payments (usually $20), they receive either nothing at all or worthless documents, but were never actually employed. Through this scheme, the pair was alleged to have collected hundreds of thousands of dollars from thousands of victims nationwide.The terms of their conviction include: payment of fines totaling over $80,000; performance by each defendant of 600 hours of hard labor community service; full restitution to all known victims; nine days in L.A. County Jail (already served); and three years’ probation.The Santa Monica City Attorney’s office filed charges against Noworyta and Chaidezdiaz in December. The case was based on more than 1,200 victims who paid $20 each to sign up for work stuffing envelopes at home.“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.”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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