A fugitive on the run for three years from charges of grand theft in a car leasing scheme was captured Wednesday at his mother’s home by police and agents of the state Department of Motor Vehicles.
Orlando DeLeon Pangilinan, a partner of the convicted leader of the leasing scheme, was picked up without incident taken to the Orange County Jail, where he remained Wednesday night unable to post $25,000 bail. He is expected to appear in Orange County Superior Court today. Pangilinan, who was living under the alias of David Anthony Castro, was picked up after a tip led DMV investigator Randy King to the Mission Viejo home. Pangilinan was believed to have been in the Philippines for much of the past three years, King said.
Pangilinan, 27, and four others were charged in 1989 with multiple counts of unlawful subleasing and grand theft for operating an illegal auto subleasing company. He fled just before trial in July, 1990.
The leader of the group, Thomas Charles Carter, 48, was convicted and later sentenced to three years in prison. Another suspect, Harry Ellsworth Jack, 69, is still a fugitive.
Purchase and lease agreements typically prohibit subleasing vehicles without the consent of the lender, and state law makes it illegal for a third party to assist in subleasing and transferring a vehicle without the lender’s consent.
The law was passed in 1988 after a rash of scams in the 1980s bilked hundreds of people and lenders of millions of dollars. Operators often collected fees from both sides of the transactions, then fled with the money and, often, the cars.