Con man accused of bilking Valley residents out of millions
Thursday, October 30, 2014
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Animal poaching, a Ponzi scheme and a criminal ring. It's all the elements of a made-for-TV movie, but in this case the victims are real.
They're Valley residents, and they were bilked out of millions of dollars. The suspect was traced to a South African jail, and authorities around the world are now working to make sure he stays in custody. The fear is, if he's released, he'll disappear as he's done for the past five years.
Suspect sought in Valley jailed in South Africa for rhinoceros poaching
Friday, September 26, 2014
A con man accused of bilking Valley residents out of millions has turned up in a South African jail, connected to a bizarre and international crime ring. Those crimes involve rhinoceros poaching in South Africa.
Arno Smit is now named in a more than 300-count indictment, along with nine others. He's a suspect Tulare County authorities have been after for more than four years.
Ask the people he's accused of scamming and they'll tell you Arno Smit talked a big game. There were private jets, fancy dinners, outings at the PGA Masters Tournament, and for Jackie Atkinson it was romantic.
How a fugitive wanted by the FBI might stay on the run for over 30 years
Friday, April 18, 2014
Rocky Pipkin from the Pipkin Detective Agency talks to our very own Evy Ramos about how a fugitive wanted by the FBI could stay on the run for over 30 years.
FBI Release -- William Bradford Bishop, Jr. is wanted for allegedly bludgeoning to death his wife (age 37), mother (age 68), and three sons (ages 5, 10 and 14) in Bethesda, Maryland, on March 1, 1976. He then allegedly transported their bodies to Columbia, North Carolina, where he buried the bodies in a shallow grave and lit them on fire.
Bishop was, and may still be, an avid outdoorsman, camper, and hiker. He had extensive camping experience in Africa. He also enjoyed canoeing, fishing, swimming, jogging, tennis, skiing and riding motorcycles. Bishop enjoyed working out several times a week. He was also a licensed amateur pilot who learned to fly in Botswana, Africa.
"In most industries, competitors getting together to restrict the supply of a good would be illegal. But in the raisin world, it's the opposite. Competitors have to work together. They all decide as a group how many raisins to release to the public. What can get you in trouble in raisins, is going against that group."
PDA's founding company, which was formed almost 100 years ago, is an example of our long commitment to service. In 1917, Charles W. Pipkin had formed his own detective agency. He called it Pipkin's National Detective Agency, and it was first mentioned in a newspaper article on June 11, 1920. On October 7, 1920, the following article, PIPKIN AGENCY GROWING RAPIDLY, appeared in the Omaha World Herald:
It is believed that this agency will eventually become one of the largest in the United States. It is eminently qualified to assume such a position because of the scope of service it is capable of rendering. Not only is general detective work done, but industrial protection is furnished for ail class businesses. C. W. Pipkin, head of the agency, has had wide experience in the apprehension of law violators. He has acquired an- enviable reputation in the capture of automobile thieves and the recovery of stolen cars. Speaking of the industrial protection service of their agency, Mr. Pipkin believes that by systematic effort practically all thefts from stores and business houses could be eliminated.
Read more about Charles W. Pipkin and history of the Pipkin National Detective Agency on our PNDA Timeline!
PDA Teams Up with InfraGard
InfraGard is an information sharing and analysis effort serving the interests and combining the knowledge base of a wide range of members. At its most basic level, InfraGard is a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the private sector.
President George W. Bush Speaks at Ag Warriors Gala
During World Ag Expo
The International Agri-Center was host to President George W. Bush as a featured guest at the Ag Warriors Gala on February 15, 2012 during World Ag Expo in Tulare, California. The event benefited returning veterans by placing them in long-term professions in the agriculture industry. The Gala Banquet was a total success.
This was the second time PDA assisted the United States Secret Service Presidential Protection Unit when Bush has visited the Central Valley. See PDA 2003 Presidential coverage.
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