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Two men arrested for robbing LA and Orange County massage parlors

LA County man accused of robbing at least 50 massage parlors
LA County man accused of robbing at least 50 massage parlors 01:29

Federal prosecutors charged two men for more than a dozen armed robberies at massage parlors across Los Angeles and Orange counties on Tuesday. 

The two LA County natives, 28-year-old Andy Cuellar and 27-year-old Arturo Morales, were arrested on Feb. 16. Both were charged with interference with commerce of robbery under the Hobbs Act and carrying a firearm during a crime of violence. The Department of Justice defines Hobbs Act crimes as "actual or attempted robbery or extortion affecting interstate or foreign commerce 'in any way or degree.'"

The robbery charge carries a sentence of at least 20 years in federal prison and the firearm charge carries a life sentence. 

The alleged robberies happened between Jan. 12-19 in Santa Ana, Reseda, Venice, Orange, Bellflower and Redondo Beach. Authorities believe that Cuellar is responsible for at least 50 massage parlor robberies throughout Southern California. Prosecutors claimed they robbed both the business and customers.

Security camera footage from the robbery in Torrance. DOJ

Officers arrested the pair after they allegedly robbed a massage parlor in Torrance. Law enforcement tracked them down less than two miles away at a gas station, going through items they stole. 

When officers pulled up to Cuellar and Morales, the two ran and started to throw away the stolen items. Authorities found $4,400 on both of them. Cuellar's clothing, a blue LA Dodgers baseball hat, also matched the description in other robberies, according to authorities.

Law enforcement also found a stolen gun in the pair's getaway car. Their arraignment will happen in the coming weeks. 

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