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Thursday, September 23, 2010

Calif. CCTV installer accused of over billing elderly woman $300K

A closed-circuit television installer has denied billing a woman more than $300,000 for a $25,000
security system.

Adam Margaros, 30, who was arrested Tuesday by Costa Mesa police, has been charged with grand
theft and felony elder abuse, plus a sentencing enhancement for theft of over $200,000, Orange
County Deputy District Attorney Craig Cazares said.

Margaros pleaded not guilty at an arraignment on Thursday, according to county Superior Court

The 74-year-old woman was given a medical examination that revealed she's suffering from paranoia and early signs of dementia or Alzheimer's disease, Cazares said. "She can take care of herself and drive to the store, but her imagination gets carried away," said the woman's son, Steve Trottier. "She thinks things are happening that aren't."

Margaros, 30, is a member of the Westminster Chamber of Commerce and has two businesses, CCTV
Masters and LYTE Solutions. He initially was recommended by another security company to install a $1,800 security system, but Cazares said that Margaros played on the woman's paranoia and convinced her to buy a series of upgrades.

Trottier said Margaros told his mother that the government had installed secret listening devices. Margaros installed a keyless entry system, plus around 20 cameras hooked up to a computer and monitors, and charged more than $320,000, Cazares said. An independent security firm estimated that the system's value plus installation cost was round 25,000, Cazares said.

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