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COMPLAINT: Montebello City Manager Tucker-Schuyler, Two Employees Named in JCS Construction Fraud

By Brian Hews

Last year, an exclusive Hews Media Group-Community News investigation found that the City of Montebello paid nearly $500,000 from 2013 to 2016 to an obscure construction company, JCS Construction (JCS), using sole source no-bid contracts – while fabricating documents using sham companies with false names and addresses and suspended state contractors licenses – so JCS could win the lucrative jobs.


HMG-CN EXCLUSIVE: City of Montebello Handed Out $500,000 in No-Bid Contracts While Fabricating Competing Bids From Sham Companies


HMG-CN found that JCS was a sole proprietorship based out of a home in Hacienda Heights owned by David Magallanes who is the pastor of Scattering Seeds Fellowship in Whittier.

The business did not have a website or a social media presence.

The company could not be found on L. A. County’s business name registration page, “DBA, ” or in the state’s database of corporations.

Even more suspect, the “Agreement Log” that lists all contracts with the City did not list JCS as a contractor.

Finally, some of the bids JCS submitted to the City contained numerous grammatical errors and misspelling of very simple words.

In spite of this, the City paid JCS $53,000 in 2013-14, $121,000 in 2014-15, and a massive $320,000 in 2015-16.

The investigation resulted in a whistle-blower lawsuit against Magallanes who subsequently acknowledged that he had submitted multiple bids after some of the work was completed for his projects.


City of Montebello Files Complaint Against Contractor; City Council and City Officials Slammed in Complaint


The lawsuit focuses on the three contracts HMG-CN uncovered that were submitted by JCS, and two other companies, Brown Construction of La Habra and CAT Contracting of Montebello.

“The bids were not real, I was asked if I could make some bids up for the city. Those bids were done after the jobs were completed,” Magallanes said.

Magallanes would not say at the time who told him to submit the fabricated bids.



City Manager Francesca Tucker-Schuyler, who was the only Montebello employee to comment said, “I don’t deal with the bids, I don’t get involved in the details — staff does.”

That statement from Tucker-Schuyler was apparently the last straw for Magallanes as one month later he took action.

HMG-CN has obtained a complaint filed by Magallanes in the Superior Court of Los Angeles on Aug. 25, 2017.

The cross-complaint is for “equitable indemnity,” a claim when one party has been ordered to pay damages to another party as a result of a third-party’s wrongful acts.

Magallanes complaint names as the third parties, the “cross defendants,” City Manager Tucker-Schyuler, Montebello Assistant City Manager Danilo Baston, and Information Systems Manager David Tsuen.



With the complaint, Magallanes is stating that if he is ordered to pay money then Tucker-Schyuler, Baston, and Tsuen should be responsible for the money.

The complaint read, “in the event (Magallanes) is found liable for damages (Magallanes) is entitled to indemnity from (Tucker-Schyuler, Baston, and Tsuen) to the extent that the wrongful acts of (Tucker-Schyuler, Baston, and Tsuen) caused Plaintiffs’ damages.”

In effect, Magallanes is alleging that Tucker-Schyuler, Baston, and Tsuen colluded with him in acts related to the fabricated construction bids.

“If any sums are found due to Plaintiff, this Court should find, declare and determine that the liability is solely of (Tucker-Schyuler, Baston, and Tsuen).”

Is is an astonishing filing by Magallanes and one that has placed the City and taxpayers on the line for Magallanes’ actions.

Equitable indemnity cases include the entire range of possible award of damages from no right to any indemnity to a right of complete indemnity.

  • Charles Esq. says:

    This will lead back to $10k Jack and his puppets Vanessa and Moe. Great story Brian but as always where’s the DA?