Fresno residents charged for allegedly aiming laser beam at CHP aircraft

Posted at 12:48 PM, Dec 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-20 15:48:24-05

FRESNO, Calif. — Two Fresno residents have been charged in federal court for allegedly aiming the beam of a laser pointer at a California Highway Patrol aircraft.

According to the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of California, on July 22, 30-year-old Carlos Villa-Lozano and 32-year-old Paulina Silva Aguilar, both of Fresno, allegedly used a bright green laser pointer to strike a CHP fixed-wing aircraft approximately 12 times. Villa-Lozano then allegedly made false statements to an FBI agent investigating the matter, saying the laser pointer was used for one to two seconds "at most" and hit the aircraft only one time.

Villa-Lozano and Silva are scheduled for arraignment tomorrow, December 21, in federal court in Fresno. If convicted, Villa-Lozano and Silva face a maximum statutory penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. If convicted of the false statement offense, Villa-Lozano faces an additional five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.