2 counts – 368(d) PC (felony) – Financial Elder Abuse
2 counts – 487 (a) PC (felony) – Grand Theft
1 count 7027.3 BP (felony) – Fraudulent Use of an Incorrect License
1 count 7028(a)(1) BP – (misdemeanor) – Contracting without a license
Jorge Palafox Construction and/or Honest Experience
Around December 2016, Jorge Fuentes-Palafox was hired by an elderly woman in Alameda County to perform work on her home. Fuentes-Palafox is not licensed with CSLB. Fuentes-Palafox falsely represented himself as a contractor and provided the homeowner with a business card displaying a license number not belonging to him. The same license number was written on several documents Fuentes-Palafox provided to the homeowner
The homeowner hired Fuentes-Palafox to perform foundation work which she believed would cost a total of $15,000. In total, Fuentes-Palafox provided 17 contracts/invoices to the homeowner for work relating to the foundation project.
The Oakland Building Department issued a Stop Order because the work was performed without permits. After the Stop Order was issued, the homeowner continued to pay Fuentes-Palafox, however he did not perform any more work at the residence.
The homeowner paid Fuentes-Palafox a total of $419,900.
As of the date of CSLB’S interviews with the homeowner, she did not have heat or hot water in her home and reported she had not been able to live in her home for approximately 10 months because of this.
CSLB utilized an Industry Expert (IE) to inspect the work. In their report, the Industry Expert determined the language of the invoices was often confusing, and the descriptions of the work were vague and lacked detail. The IE determined it was clear that a substantial amount of the work listed on the invoices was not performed. Additionally, based off the Industry Expert’s report, Fuentes-Palafox overcharged the homeowner approximately $341,403 in excess of the value of work performed.
During the investigation, it was revealed that Jorge Fuentes-Palafox may actually be a person by the name of Sergio Fuentes-Aguilar. The Alameda County Sheriff’s Office – Criminal Identification Bureau (hereinafter, ACSO – CIB) was provided DMV information for both Jorge Fuentes-Palafox and Sergio Fuentes-Aguilar and it was requested they compare the two fingerprint images. In November 2019, an ACSO – CIB Supervisor advised the fingerprints Jorge Fuentes-Palafox and Sergio Fuentes-Aguilar were in fact the same person. ACSO – CIB also submitted this print to an Automated Fingerprint Identification System at an attempt to further identify the pictured suspect; however a match could not be located within Alameda County, Contra Costa County, or Department of Justice (DOJ) at that time.
On April 6, 2021, Fuentes-Palafox was booked on an active arrest warrant for this case. On September 22, 2021, Fuentes-Palafox failed to appear at the preliminary hearing. As a result, a ‘no bail’ arrest was issued.