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Cathedral City man pleads not guilty to embezzling

A Cathedral City man who allegedly took more than $260,000 from his grandparents, then hid the couple in a nursing home across the border, pleaded not guilty today to 21 counts of embezzlement of an elderly adult.

Luis Carlos Fernandez, 41, is accused of taking $267,335.85 from his 82-year-old grandfather and 86-year-old grandmother, the bulk of which was funneled into an account for “Yes Home Care,” a company that does not exist, according to prosecutors.

Read: Palm Desert Walmart employees accused of embezzlement

Fernandez allegedly had his grandparents paying bills to Yes Home Care from October 2016 to March of this year and used the money to pay off car loans, bills and also spent money on retail shopping and entertainment, an arrest warrant declaration states.

Fernandez allegedly fled the country this summer with the victims, who authorities found in a Mexican nursing home, according to the declaration.

Fernandez was taken into custody Wednesday by Indio police.

He’s being held on $268,000 bail — the amount he’s alleged to have stolen — and is slated to return to court next week for a bail review hearing.

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