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    United States Attorney's Office
    Central District of California

    Thom Mrozek
    Public Affairs Officer

    (213) 894-6947
    thom.mrozek@usdoj.gov



    Return to the 2009 Press Release Index
    Release No. 09-102

    August 14, 2009

    FEDERAL GRAND JURY INDICTS THREE MEN IN KIDNAPPING OF VALLEY MAN WHO WAS SHOT WITH GUN, SHOCKED WITH TASER AND HELD FOR $1 MILLION RANSOM FOR FIVE DAYS

    LOS ANGELES – A federal grand jury has indicted three men on kidnapping charges for abducting a Van Nuys man who was shot, shocked with a taser and held captive for five days while his kidnappers attempted to negotiate a $1 million ransom payment.

    The two-count indictment returned Thursday afternoon charges the defendants with two counts – conspiracy to commit kidnapping and kidnapping. The indictment alleges that the kidnapping victim was shot and shocked with a taser during his abduction, and that he was bound and blindfolded and while he was held captive for five days. The captors allegedly withheld necessary medical treatment for the victim’s life-threatening gunshot wound.

    The indictment names:

    Vagan Adzhemyan, 41, of Costa Mesa;

    Suren Garibyan, 32, of North Hollywood; and

    Galvin Shaun Gibson, 30, of Mira Loma.

    All three men were taken into custody on August 3, when the kidnapping victim was rescued from Gibson’s Mira Loma residence by a team of Los Angeles Police Department SWAT officers. The defendants, who were initially charged in a criminal complaint filed in federal court, have all been ordered held without bond and are scheduled to be arraigned in federal court on the indictment on August 24.

    According to the criminal complaint and the indictment, Adzhemyan and Garibyan abducted the victim from the underground parking garage of a Van Nuys apartment complex in the early morning hours of July 29. During the abduction, the kidnapping victim was shot and shocked with a taser before he was forced into a waiting vehicle, while an associate with the victim was violently assaulted by the kidnappers. Over the next five days, the kidnapping victim was bound and forced to wear a blindfold as he was held at various locations in Southern California. During the time that the victim was held captive, the kidnappers directed him to use cellular telephones to make calls to family members and close associates in the Los Angeles area and in Russia in order to secure a $1 million ransom in exchange for the victim’s safe release.

    On August 3, the day the kidnapping victim was rescued by the LAPD SWAT team, Adzhemyan and Garibyan used the victim’s ATM card to withdraw cash from the victim’s bank account, while Gibson and his three pit bull dogs kept watch over the blindfolded victim at Gibson’s residence.

    The victim remains hospitalized in critical condition. When he was shot, the bullet passed through his abdominal area and ruptured his bowel, which caused a serious infection as the injury was left untreated for five days.

    The charges in the indictment carry a statutory maximum penalty of life in federal prison.

    A indictment contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.

    The investigation into the kidnapping was conducted by the Los Angeles Police Department’s Robbery-Homicide Division and the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Violent Crimes Squad.

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    Release No. 09-102
    Return to the 2009 Press Release Index