VENTURA COUNTY – As if the nation’s homegrown criminals aren’t carrying their own nefarious weight, by all
accounts Southern California’s citizenry is now the focus of attention by organized groups of
burglars born and bred in various South American countries.
Evidence of this came on the afternoon of October 21st with the arrests of Jose Entrique Soto
Fuentes, 25, Marvin Pissani Reyes, 22, Richardo Francisco Martinez Guerrero, 61, and Danilo
Eduardo Navas Fuica, 27. All four men, currently residing in Los Angeles County but conducting
their criminal activities throughout Ventura County, are Chilean nationals.
According to Ventura County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Det. Sgt. Kevin Lynch, the four
men are attached to South American Theft Groups (SATGs) who “operate in small teams of
highly skilled criminals who originate from several South American countries.” With a
reputation for committing both residential and commercial burglaries, as well as home invasion
robberies, these crooks are known to use “very specific methods in order to maximize success
and evade capture.”
These four suspects, however, may have come up short in maximizing their “success” on August
5, 2022 when a Moorpark homeowner confronted them during an attempted burglary and
scared them off. Once that crime was reported, the Thousand Oaks Special Enforcement Unit
was called into action. Their investigation led to the identification of Fuentes and Reyes and the
hunt for the two men began in earnest.
On October 21st , working on information that Fuentes and Reyes were actively committing
vehicle burglaries in Orange County, Ventura law enforcement alerted the Orange County
Sheriff’s Directed Enforcement Team. Shortly thereafter, Fuentes and Reyes were located in the
company of Guerrero and Fuica. Evidence uncovered at the time of their contact with the
suspects indicated they were actively burglarizing vehicles throughout the city of Laguna Nigel.
All four men were taken into custody and immediately transported to the Orange County Jail,
where they await a free ride back north to the Ventura County Jail on charges of vehicle
burglary, identity theft, and conspiracy, with their respective bails set at $50,000 each.
by Robert L. McCullough