From the daily archives: Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Word has just come out that the San Diego Padres have offered to help raise money for the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life. Special discount priced tickets can be purchased for Padres’ home games from June 11 through June 20 and $5.00 from every ticket purchased will be donated back to the American Cancer Society Relay For Life. The dollars are not directly credited to your local community’s Relay For Life, but the funds go to support the same fight.

The tickets are almost 50% off the regular price and you get to watch the 1st place Padres take on the Seattle Mariners, Toronto Blue jays, or Baltimore Orioles while helping raise money for the American Cancer Society!

Let your committee and all the Team Captains know about this and maybe you could use this as a great time to get everyone together to celebrate the success of your Relay. Get the Team Captains to share it will all of their team members and families and make it a big community outing. Let all of your participants know because they will not want to be left out. Let’s get as many Relayers there for that week and turn Petco Park PURPLE!

What a great way to help raise funds for the American Cancer Society and promote the many Relay For Life events that San Diego holds each year.

You can get more information from your Staff partner but I wanted to get this information out to you as soon as possible because tickets will be going fast! I have included a copy of a flyer but you should purchase you tickets online.

Here are the directions for purchasing the discounted American Cancer Society Relay For Life Padres Tickets:

Step 1: Visit and click on the green “T” next to the Baltimore Orioles logo / American Cancer Society. Be sure not to select the Prostate Cancer Foundation (It only lists the game on the 20th, but you’ll be able to purchase tickets for any of the games listed above.

Step 2: Enter the promotional code ACS

Step 3: Select the game(s) you’ll be attending

Step 4: Purchase Tickets

Step 5: Get your Gloves, peanuts, popcorn, and cracker jacks ready!!

Let’s Turn Petco Park Purple!!!

Come out and support your charity as they are recognized as one of the San Diego Padres Community Partners. A portion of the proceeds go back to help support your charity.
ORDERS OF 20 TICKETS OR MORE:   Contact:  Ryan Eifler   Phone#619-795-5162  email:
OR MAIL ORDER FORM TO: San Diego Padres 100 Park Blvd., San Diego, CA 92101
Thank you,
Susie Carillo,  2010 RFL El Centro Chair
Dolores Hamilton
Relay For Life Lead Volunteer
Border Sierra South

Fight Back: 63 years after founding our research program, the American Cancer Society remains the largest non-profit, non-government source of funds for cancer research. We have made progress in research by providing up to 25% of all cancer research funding to beginning researchers with cutting-edge ideas and funding 44 researchers that have won the Nobel Prize.=============


NILAND, Calif. – U.S. Border Patrol agents assigned to the El Centro Sector rescued a group of men lost near the Chocolate Mountains in Niland, Calif.   On Friday at approximately 4:50 p.m., El Centro Sector received a call from the Imperial County Sheriff’s Offices in regards to a person claiming to be in distress along with two other individuals.   Border Patrol Search, Trauma and Rescue (BORSTAR) Agents responded to the distress call and were on location shortly thereafter.  At approximately 11:45 p.m. BORSTAR agents located the three individuals two miles north of the Coachella Canal Road on Gas Line Road.   Two of the three individuals were in stable condition.  The third individual was evacuated by way of helicopter to El Centro Regional Medical Center for treatment of dehydration.  The individual was treated and released from the hospital.   It was determined that all three individuals were Mexican citizens illegally present in the United States.  They were all granted a voluntary return to Mexico upon processing.    BORSTAR is one facet of the U.S. Border Patrol’s Border Safety Initiative (BSI), which was implemented as a proactive, bi-national strategy to reduce injuries, prevent fatalities, and ultimately make the border region safer for the communities they serve.


“A New Day, A New Opportunity”

The El Centro Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Bureau will hold its 104th Annual Dinner on Thursday, July 10. This important event is one of the few opportunities the Businesses of El Centro have to gather as a community. Cathy Kennerson, CEO of the Chamber stated, “The theme of ‘A New Day, A New Opportunity’ was selected for this year’s annual dinner because of the opportunities we have to grow our local economy in these rough water times.” She went on to say, “These have been tough days for all the businesses of Imperial Valley; we need to remember all that is good and vibrant about business and focus on a positive future.”

The evening begins at 6:00 pm at the Barcelona Event Center, 330 Wake Avenue in El Centro. The first hour of the evening will feature wine tasting and a silent auction. The Dinner will follow at 7:00 pm. The Chamber will celebrate the administration of outgoing President, Bill DuBois and will welcome its new President, Aaron Popejoy. The cost of the event is $65 per person. Reservations can be made on-line at or by calling the Chamber Office at 760-352-3681.


HERE IT IS ELECTION TIME IN IMPERIAL COUNTY and we can’t resist offering some comments and endorsements for the candidates, as we usually do. The pickin’s haven’t been slim but they haven’t been real exciting either.

There are a lot of old faces trying for office once again  and only a handful of new ones. Does anybody know much about any of these good folks? Probably not.
Press releases have been scarce this year. As have been ads in newspapers. According to the candidates we talked to, the funds haven’t been coming in the way they have in the past from those who can afford to contribute to campaign chests. Apparently, they have some reduced production to deal with themselves.
But we will take a stab at seeing who’s who. Remember, it’s just for fun.
Carlos Zaragosa is challenging Roy Buckner as county tax assessor. Buckner has been in office for a long time and has normally run unopposed. Zaragosa thinks its time for some leadership change at the top in this important tax office.
We like to encourage new people, so we’re going to pick Zaragosa.
Mr. Buckner has served the county for many years, he would make a good choice too.
But we want to encourage some younger participation in the election process.
Chuck Storey is campaigning actively for the County Clerk/Recorder’s job. that’s the one that monitors elections and gives the result.
It’s also the one that gets the most flak form the loser in the campaigns because the ballots haven’t been counted properly. After that, most folks forget about the job.
Storey thinks he can do a better job than his opponents and vows to modernize the election department. That would be a good idea.
Elections in Imperial County are antiquated in comparison to other cities in California and the rest of the nation. Computers have taken over and even online voting is occurring. There’s even a move to early voting and quick tabulations of results.
Imperial County needs lots of help here. Perhaps if they modernized the equipment, election day wouldn’t look like it came from
the pages of a museum collection.
Somebody from the outside would be a breath of fresh air. We haven’t heard a word from the other candidates either.
For County Supervisor we have the Calexico District – District One. And it’s a race between four current and former city council members in Calexico.
Louis Fuentes was appointed a year ago to fill the term of Victor Carrillo who took over as City Manager in the Border City.
Fuentes did some maneuvering with the Republican Governor to get the job. He has lots of political ambition. Whether its for the benefit of Calexico or himself remains to be seen.
Luis Castro has the ability to generate a lot of support, especially from the Hispanic community. He’s opposed to big pay increases in Calexico, and bills himself as a friend of the working man and woman.
John Renison served three terms on the City Council and has plenty of experience dealing with Calexico’s continued development. He would bring an eloquent voice to the Supervisor’s board that favors forward progress.
Carmen Durazo served a four year term on the city council with an emphasis on the arts. She worked to get an “Art Tax” established on housing in the city. If you like beautification, she’s the one.
We still like Renison. We think he deserves a shot at the higher office. He’s been around politics and education for a long time and has the experience to deal with the problems facing the county today.
County Supervisor District 5 – This one has three old pros running against each other in an election that could be decided on the territory they have represented.
Wally Leimgruber is going for his fourth term on the board. He’s proven to be a conservative with religious right leanings. He represents a district that has two casinos located in it on the border with Arizona. But he opposes the expansion of gambling in Imperial County.
Ray Castillo is the former mayor of El Centro who is taking a second shot at the Supervisor’s position. He lost to Leimgruber by less than 100 votes the last time. He has a home in Holtville, but his political strength is still in El Centro. He sees jobs as the main issue in the county at this time.
Steve Vasquez served on the Brawley City Council for 16 years before deciding to step down   and seek the Supervisor’s position. His entry into the election could split the vote and force a runoff in the Fall.
I have to lean toward Wally, although I have spoken out in favor of term limits in the past. The east side of the Valley and Holtville needs representation on the Supervisor’s Board. When a candidate comes along that has given this area the support he has, maybe we’ll recommend him.
The IID Board has three, count’em three, elections that are contested this time.
In Division One David Ouzan, the current Mayor of Calexico, is running against Matt Dessert and Rudy Maldonado.
We like Ouzan. He brings a flamboyant style to local politics that you don’t find in other candidates. He also looks for solutions that are outside the norm. He will make IID Boar d meetings interesting, if nothing else.
Matt Dessert is another IID employee who wants to get on the board. Rudy Maldonado served two terms, but quit for health reasons. He returns. We think he has had his day and its time for some new thinking on the Board.
In Division Three incumbent Jim Hanks is running against Ruben Casarez, whom he calls “a disgruntled IID employee.”
Hanks has done  a pretty good job on the IID Board. He is old school  when it come sot water and electrical politics. old school is what people seem to like around here.
We would have to go with Hanks since we don’t know enough about his opponent and he has made little effort to share his opinions with us.
In Division 5 Anthony Sanchez is running for a second term against Norma Galindo. Sanchez was elected in a surprise to everyone four years ago except him.
Norma Galindo has run for several different offices and has been mostly concerned with education.
In the past, she was more of a  liberal, anti-establishment candidate. We’re not sure why she is seeking this position. She hasn’t told us. You will have to figure it out yourselves.
And , of course, there is the Juan Vargas running against Mary Salas for the State Senate.
I don’t like Vargas. His campaign tactics are reprehensible and tactless. All he does is attack his opponent and then tell us what a great guy he is
The question is “what are you going to do for us?’ And that’s one that he never answers. He says he is going to clean up Sacramento. I’m more concerned about Imperial County.
Salas at least tells you what she has  worked on in the Assembly. We want people who move ahead in a positive manner, not mud slingers who make up things to call issues.
Vote for Salas and get some representation.
Don’t forget to vote on the propositions. My word on that is to vote in favor of those that don’t cost you anything and against those that do cost you.
The election is June 8, 2010. Peace and freedom to all.
OVER IN CALEXICO YOU HAVE FIVE candidates vying for two positions. We like Maritza Hurtado, because she has had a long history of community inolvement. She would also add a woman’s opinion to an all-male board.
Guillermo Hermosillo was appointed to fill the vacant position created when Louis Fuentes moved to the Board of Supervisors. Hermosillo wants to get elected to this position.
Don Chairez would add some new blood to this body and give somebody who hasn’t been involved in the political  process a chance to show what he can do. Some fresh faces are always welcom.
Bill Hodge has been a community advocate and chairman of the Calexico Arts Commission. He helped get the Calexico Arts Center established, but also helped establish an art tax in the city for housing.
Ulysses Cardenas is making a first attempt at the City Council.
With all these folks to vote for, we hope there is a good turnout at the polls. There are enough candidates to choose from that eveyrone should have somebody who appeals to them. Name recognition is still the most significant factor in the election. We’ll find out who has the most friends.


U.S. and Foreign Law Enforecement Agencies Join Forces Against Mass-Marketing Fraud

June 1st, 2010 Posted by Tracy Russo

Mass-marketing fraud is a global problem that can cause individuals to lose thousands and even millions of dollars.  Mass-marketing fraud schemes target individuals of all ages and walks of life.  Victims are lured with false promises of significant cash prizes, goods and services in exchange for up-front fees, taxes or donations.

Today, law enforcement and consumer protection agencies in the United States and around the world are making efforts to raise awareness about mass-marketing fraud.

Mass-marketing fraud can take many forms.  What these schemes have in common is the use of one or more mass communication method such as the Internet, telephones, the mail or mass meetings in person.

Since Oct. 1, 2009, the Department of Justice has charged 80 defendants in 53 mass-marketing fraud prosecutions in 27 judicial districts.  These cases demonstrate the wide variety of mass-marketing fraud schemes, which increasingly operate from and affect multiple jurisdictions around the world.  These cases involved fraud losses totaling more than $497.6 million.

For example, last week the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Illinois charged an individual for allegedly engaging in an international Ponzi scheme that was operated through a website.  The scheme allegedly resulted in a total of $70 million in losses to more than 40,000 investors in more than 120 countries.  (link to SDIL press release)

In Los Angeles today, the FBI, in partnership with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, will hold an event to educate consumers on how to recognize and avoid mass-marketing fraud schemes.

The FBI, in addition to its investigative efforts, posts consumer information about mass-marketing fraud on its website at  This week’s Inside the FBI podcast features an interview with a mass-marketing fraud victim who lost her retirement savings.

USPIS announced that the Universal Postal Union (UPU), a specialized United Nations agency for international cooperation between postal services, is today rolling out a worldwide public education campaign against mass-marketing fraud.

The National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center (IPR) Center is working to combat mass-marketing fraud with Operation Stamp Out, an operation that began in February 2009, to stop the importation and distribution of counterfeit monetary instruments, counterfeit U.S. Postal money orders, stamps and meter stamps into the United States.

Operation Stamp Out combines the expertise of specific areas of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the U.S. Postal Service.  As of March 2010, CBP and ICE, both members of the IPR Center, have conducted seizures of more than 36,000 counterfeit financial instruments with a retail value of more than $12 billion.

The FTC, in its efforts to raise awareness about mass-marketing fraud, just recently issued a new consumer brochure on how individuals can avoid fraud.

More information about common mass-marketing fraud schemes and how to avoid becoming a victim of mass-marketing fraud can be found at the Department of Justice’s website or at the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force website at

Today’s efforts to raise public awareness about mass-marketing fraud are part of a multinational day of action against mass-marketing fraud.  Authorities in Australia, Canada, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom are also raising awareness in their respective countries.

If you think you may have been a victim of mass-marketing fraud, the FBI encourages the public to report any fraudulent activity to the Internet Crime Complaint Center, a joint project of the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center, at  Victims of mass-marketing fraud may also contact the FTC’s Complaint Assistant, either by calling the FTC’s toll-free number, 1-877-987-3728, or by filing an online form available through its website,

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