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MOORPARK : County Cleans Up Illegal Junkyard

More than 70 cars have been crushed and removed from an illegal junkyard north of Moorpark.

The operator, Edwin Jay Olin, 47, had been warned four times by county officials to remove abandoned and stored cars from the lot he rents on Stockton Road north of Moorpark, said Sheldon Klain, a Ventura County code enforcement officer.

Last week, the county demanded that Olin remove 78 remaining cars from the site or face criminal charges. Olin was evicted by the owner of the property, Farmland Inc. of Los Angeles, after he failed to pay rent for more than two years, Klain said.

Olin faces misdemeanor charges for allegedly violating planning, zoning and motor vehicle codes for operating an illegal junkyard, a court official said.

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It is not the first time Olin has faced criminal charges. On Sept. 12, he shot and killed two men at the junkyard after they attacked him to recover a debt he allegedly owed. Homicide charges were eventually dismissed by the district attorney’s office.

The junk dealer lived with his wife in a metal shed at the site and allowed other people to live illegally in a camper. None of the dwellings had toilets or plumbing facilities at the site, which was a former chicken ranch.

“The place looked like a dump,” Klain said. “There were rats all over the place.”

The junkyard at one point held as many as 150 abandoned and stored automobiles, some partly dismantled and others in storage.

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