DA Tony Rackauckas Wrecks Hoodlum's Quick Prison Trip

Daniel Infante gangster mug.jpg
Infante: We don't need no stinking Three Strikes Law
Most often hoodlums locked in prison drop the pruno jar and fly off their bunk beds with joy when they hear that an appellate court has issued a reversal in their criminal case.

But sadly for Orange County's Daniel Infante the news wasn't worth celebrating.

Infante, a Headhunters gangster in the midst of his fourth trip to a California prison, can thank District Attorney Tony Rackauckas for working overtime to keep him locked up longer than his initial punishment for gang-related activities in La Habra.

This week at Rackauckas' urging, a California Court of Appeal based in Santa Ana reversed Superior Court Judge Richard Stanford's May 2012 decision to dismiss two of four felony charges in the case.

Police stopped Infante in April 2010 for failing to obey a traffic sign and found a revolver and semi-automatic 9mm handgun, both loaded, inside the vehicle.

Given the hoodlum's prior criminal history, the DA piled on the charges: possession of a concealed firearm in a motor vehicle by an active gang member, possession of a loaded firearm in public by an active gang member, possession of a firearm by a felon and active participation in a criminal street gang.
In a 14-page opinion, Justice Eileen C. Moore wrote for a three-justice panel that state law allows prosecutors to file an avalanche of charges for known gang members.

Upshot: Infante, 32, who is presently enjoying the spectacular confines of Kern Valley State Prison, should face at least a doubling of his current, two-year punishment and then can return to society to commit more crimes.

(In the comments section, the hoodlum's lawyer says his client won't get additional time despite the ruling.)

Stanford was removed from the bench earlier this year for granting judicial favors for personal friends.

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I do want to clarify one thing. I indicated Judge Stanford was "no great friend of the defense." I did not mean to disparage the former Judge in any way, only to point out that Judge Stanford, a former prosecutor and long time felony panel judge at the time, was known as a conservative judge who certainly would not have gone out of his way to help an accused gang member, but was simply doing his job and following the only published caselaw that was available to him at the time.


Thank you leestonum, I apologize for using vulgar words a few times, but this caught me way off guard, I commented so quickly. Thank you so much for your informative comment. I honestly do appreciate it.


Mr. Moxley--as trial counsel on this case, I have to agree with the below commenter, your article gets very few of the facts straight and really serves no purpose other than to be a taunting bully.


Had you read the opinion, it certainly does not stand for the proposition that "prosecutors [are allowed] to file an avalanche of charges for known gang members," but rather dealt with a very technical aspect of the Active Participation in a Gang (Penal Code 186.22(a)) statute, the requirement of felonious conduct, as it relates to firearm possession. As I'm sure you know, the former Judge Stanford was no great friend of the defense particularly in regards to nuanced arguments about the state's gang statutes. What Stanford did was follow the only caselaw on point at the time, a decision out of the 5th. The 4th (our appellate court in Orange County), in its opinion expressly notes this and expressly indicates that it is disagreeing with the 5th, creating an appellate split that will at some point have to be resolved by the Supreme Court.Additionally, your statement that Mr. Infante is "is likely to face at least a doubling of his current, two-year punishment," is utterly, completely without any factual basis whatsoever. Again, had you taken then time to read the opinion, you would have seen that PRIOR to the motion in which Judge Stanford dismissed the now reinstated charges, Mr. Infante had already entered into a plea agreement that called for a 2 year prison sentence. That plea was withdrawn in light of the 4th Appellate District's decision in In re Jorge P. That was done by agreement between the prosecution and defense because we actually both want to get it right and see to it that the law is defined and applied correctly. So again, your article is wrong and misinforms your readers.Lastly, and in my opinion, most troubling, is your use of childish epithets directed toward a person you have never met, whose case you never covered, who you know nothing about. Evidently, you couldn't even be bothered to read the opinion about his case you were reporting on or check the minutes of his case here in Superior Court to assure your article was factually accurate.Reporting like this is lazy. It serves absolutely no purpose. You haven't informed the readership of this paper in any meaningful way about what is going on in their courts or even about what is, to some, a very interesting technical legal issue. We have the Register for lazy, biased pro law enforcement reporting if that's what we need. You are supposed to be the county's independent. There is lots of interesting stuff occurring every day in our courts, if you'd be interested in writing an article that requires more than a 30 second trip to the Appellate District's website or the recitation of a DA Press Release, feel free to call me and I'd be happy to point you in the direction of some stories that I think your readers might be interested in and that, more importantly, might have the effect of making them more informed and engaged citizens of this county.


I've read your writing since I came to this county in 2006. When you take the time to investigate and report, its fantastic. You do yourself, your paper and your readers a real disservice with petty and uninformed pieces like this.


Sincerely,Lee J. StonumDeputy Alternate DefenderCounty of Orange 


Bye bye a-hole? Do you even know this person? And Mr. Scott Moxley did you actually here those words come from Mr. Infant e's mouth, "we don't need no stinking three strikes law?" How could you even fathom that judge Stanford would be a friend to Mr. Infante, let alone doing him a favor by sending him to prison. And for you to say Mr. Infante is enjoying Kern valley state prison, I take it you have been and enjoyed your stay. I respect your fucked up incorrect article, why you chose Mr. Infante as the example, is beside me, but for you to make absurd accusations about when he returns to society, you do not even fuckin know him. Its so easy for you to be a bully when Mr. Infante is defenseless at the moment. All in all get your facts straight before you form your opinion and write an article.

rscottmoxley topcommenter

@leestonum Wow, please don't have a heart attack! Despite your snooty BS otherwise, I don't take orders from the DA's office and I read the opinion. Did you? The ruling concluded that the judge "erred in granting the defendant's" motions to dismiss two felonies because the DA's office proved Infante had been "in violation of 186.22(a)," active participation in a gang. If your client hadn't been a hoodlum, he wouldn't have had to worry about the prosecutor winning the additional charges. I applaud you standing up for your client. But it is laughable to pretend I can't fairly opine about likely recidivism given that he's no angel. Just 32, he has already been ordered to prison FOUR times, a fact you conveniently ignored.

rscottmoxley topcommenter

@veebechillin Normally I wouldn't respond to the likes of you. But I do believe you really are clueless. Your little angel is a remorseless gangster who has been to prison four times. That's a damn good reason to suspect he has serious trouble obeying the law.

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