Two brothers caught using a dead contractor’s cancelled license and several other unlicensed contractors are facing a variety of criminal charges by California’s State License Board.
Andrei Sitkin, an unlicensed painter, and his brother, unlicensed tile worker Sergey Sitkin, are accused of contracting without a license, illegal advertising, and using the contractor license number of an Agoura Hills man whose license was cancelled upon his death in 1993.
The charges followed a sting by the CSLB in cooperation with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s and District Attorney’s offices. California Business & Professions (B&P) Code carries penalties of up to $10,000 and up to one year in jail for willful and intentional use of a contractor license number that does not correspond to a number on a current, valid license held by that individual.
Another pair of contractor brothers also received misdemeanor Notices to Appear (NTA) in superior court. Martin Sanchez faces charges of contracting without a license and illegal advertising. His brother, Gerardo Sanchez, was issued an NTA for allowing Martin to use his expired license.
A fifth man, Sergio Romero, received an NTA for contracting without a license, illegal advertising and misdemeanor misrepresentation of a license not issued to him. Authorities say Romero first claimed the license was his retired father’s, then his cousin’s, and then that he didn’t remember his father’s name. The license is actually one that belonged to a Portland, Ore., general engineering company that cancelled the license in 1999.
Nine other men were charged with contracting without a license, including Heriberto Ochoa-Cortez, who is also accused of illegal advertising and soliciting an excessive down payment.
The CSLB web site includes a license look-up feature that also indicates whether the licensee has the required workers’ compensation coverage and current license bonds.
CSLB licenses about 310,000 contractors from various trades.