Operator of Central California Bio-Lab Indicted for Distributing Adulterated and Misbranded COVID-19 Tests and Lying to Authorities
FRESNO, Calif. — On Friday, March 4, 2022, after a four–day trial, a federal jury found Ivan Isho, 44, of Peoria, Arizona, guilty of two counts of wire fraud, one count of false impersonation of a federal officer, and stalking, United States Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.
According to evidence presented at trial, in 2016 and 2017, Isho pretended to be an FBI agent and claimed to members of the Assyrian community in Ceres that he could help them obtain visas for their family members living outside the United States. He displayed fake FBI credentials and a gun to aid his misrepresentations to his victims. They paid him thousands of dollars, including by means of interstate wire transmission, and provided him with copies of personal family documents. However, Isho had no ability to obtain and never helped to obtain visas for the victims’ family members. Isho was never employed in any capacity by the FBI.
Additionally, between April 2017 and April 2018, Isho held himself out as an FBI Special Agent to a female victim whom he harassed by means of repeated phone calls and threatening and harassing voicemail messages to both the victim and her husband.
At trial, Isho testified and claimed he only possessed the fake FBI credentials as part of a Halloween costume, despite recordings in evidence of his voicemails claiming to be with the FBI received in the months of April and August 2017. He further admitted to threatening the stalking victim with abusive language and various threats.
This case is the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Laura D. Withers and Laura Jean Berger are prosecuting the case.
Isho is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Dale A. Drozd on May 31, 2022. Isho faces a maximum statutory penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.