In Response to Norman Hsu's Arrest

Friday, September 7, 2007
Contact: (415) 703-5837, agpressoffice@doj.ca.gov

In response to requests for reaction to yesterday's arrest of Norman Hsu, the California Department of Justice is providing the following information:

As you know, Norman Hsu was charged in an 18 count felony complaint in August 1991 with stealing $1 million from approximately 20 investors in a Ponzi-type scheme to buy and resell latex gloves that did not exist. He was held to answer after a preliminary hearing in November of 1991 and an information was filed in the superior court charging Hsu with 16 counts of grant theft and excessive taking allegations.

Mr. Hsu agreed to a negotiated disposition of the case on February 6, 1992; he entered a no contest plea to one count of grand theft and admitted an excessive taking allegation. The agreement called for a three year sentence to state prison and an order for restitution to all of the victims.

Mr. Hsu failed to appear for sentencing on June 10, 1992, and a bench warrant issued for his arrest with bail set at $2,000,000.

On August 31, 2007, Mr. Hsu surrendered at the San Mateo County Superior Court before Judge James Ellis. Judge Ellis denied a request to lower the bail and remanded Mr. Hsu pending the posting of bail or a bail hearing. He posted the $2 million bond and agreed to return to court for a hearing where he would turn in his passport on September 5, 2007 at 9:00 a.m. He did not appear at that hearing and his bail was revoked and a bench warrant for his arrested was issued by the San Mateo Superior Court.

Yesterday, a federal arrest warrant for Unlawful Flight to Avoid Prosecution was issued for his arrest. FBI agents arrested Norman Hsu yesterday evening at a hospital in Grand Junction, Colorado.

The bench warrant, issued Wednesday by the San Mateo Superior Court after Hsu failed to appear, is still in effect.

Here are the next steps: Hsu is currently still in the hospital in Colorado. After a hearing before a federal magistrate in Colorado, Hsu will be transferred to a federal district court in California for release back to San Mateo County where he will face the felony grand theft charge of which he pled no contest to in 1992. The San Mateo County Sheriff's Office will lead the extradition from Colorado back to California after Hsu is released from the hospital and federal custody.

You may attribute the following quote to Deputy Attorney General Ralph Sivilla: 'We appreciate the excellent work by the FBI and the United State Attorney's Office in obtaining an arrest warrant and apprehending Mr. Hsu as quickly as possible.'

# # #