Orange County DA

2 Illegal Immigrants Who Faked Being Immigration Agents, Charged With Hate Crimes In California Robberies

Orange County DA
Orange County DA

Two Romanian nationals, Laurentiu Baceanu and Vasile Alexandru, both 19 years old, have been arrested and charged with hate crimes in Orange County, California. The men are accused of posing as Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents to target Hispanic victims in a string of street robberies.

Anaheim Police Department officials allege that Baceanu and Alexandru approached Hispanic individuals on multiple occasions, spoke to them in Spanish, and presented fake badges identifying themselves as ICE agents. They then demanded money and valuables from the victims before fleeing the scene.

Authorities believe the use of fake ICE badges and the targeting of Hispanic victims constitute a hate crime. Hate crimes are defined as criminal acts motivated by prejudice against a person’s race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, or other protected characteristics.

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The investigation began after police responded to two separate robbery reports on June 20th in Anaheim. Detectives quickly connected the incidents and identified the suspects. Police believe Baceanu and Alexandru may have been involved in similar robberies beyond Anaheim, possibly throughout Orange County.

Law enforcement officials are urging anyone who may have been a victim of these crimes or who has information about the suspects to come forward. The Anaheim Police Department is leading the investigation, with assistance from the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.

Baceanu and Alexandru are currently in custody awaiting arraignment on charges that include robbery, impersonating a peace officer, and a hate crime. If convicted, they face significant prison sentences.

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