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Document and Benefit Fraud

3 face federal charges in ICE probe of Hungarian prostitution ring

Defendants include San Fernando Valley adult film and video director

LOS ANGELES - Two Hungarian nationals and a Los Angeles-area adult film director are facing federal charges today for making false statements on immigration applications related to sham marriages, violations that came to light during an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) into a scheme involving Hungarian women who came to United States and worked as prostitutes at a brothel in Sherman Oaks, Calif.

Two of the suspects, including the film director, were arrested by ICE agents earlier today. David Allen Crawford, known in the adult film industry as David Lord, was taken into custody at his Reseda home. The 37-year-old owner of Primal Productions is charged with perjury in relation to an immigration application for his Hungarian "spouse," Agnes Jeges. Jeges was arrested at her Van Nuys apartment this morning.

A criminal complaint filed in the case alleges that Crawford, who is a United States citizen, entered into a sham marriage with Jeges to enable her to remain in the United States. Jeges, 35, is also charged with making false statements. In applying for Jeges' "green card," the two stated they lived together, when they did not, and Jeges denied she had ever engaged in prostitution.

According to court documents, Jeges actually worked as a prostitute for Angela Csutai, 33, of Van Nuys, who allegedly ran the prostitution operation. Csutai purportedly operated a brothel employing Hungarian women out of a Sherman Oaks apartment complex from 2004 to 2006. Csutai, who was arrested June 17, was formally charged yesterday with perjury and making false statements on an immigration application in a four-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury. Like Jeges, Csutai is suspected of entering into a sham marriage with a U.S. citizen to gain legal permanent residency.

In her "green card" application, Csutai stated she was a "housewife" when, in fact, she was operating a brothel at that time. In addition, during an interview with a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services adjudications officer, Csutai lied under oath about her occupation and asserted she was living with her "spouse," when she was not.

"No one should ever look upon immigration benefit fraud as a victimless crime," said Robert Schoch, special agent in charge for the ICE Office of Investigations in Los Angeles. "When people lie to obtain an immigration benefit, they not only cheat those who comply with the law and respect the system, but, as we believe occurred in this case, their lies and falsehoods are often designed to mask other types of criminal activity."

Crawford and Jeges are expected to make their initial appearance in federal court here this afternoon. Csutai is scheduled to be arraigned on the indictment next Monday. The perjury charges carry a maximum penalty of five years in federal prison, while the charge of making false statements is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.