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Brothel worker, armored transport employee arrested in embezzlement scheme

The Nye County Sheriff’s Office broke up an alleged embezzlement scheme involving a local brothel employee and an armored truck company employee, police announced at a news conference Monday.

As part of what police named, “Operation Red Carpet,” Shiva Zamari, and Jessie Aulelava were arrested in Clark County on separate dates this month in an investigation that has revealed a theft that amounted to a six-figure sum.

“Approximately $100,000 dollars was taken over the course of several months, and quite honestly they keep finding more,” said Nye County Sheriff Sharon Wehrly.

Zamari was a money counter at one of the two brothels near Pahrump, and Aulelava worked for Loomis, an armored transport company. Police were unclear if the two suspects knew each other outside of their working relationship, and were still looking into the possibility.

Zamari and Aulelava, both Las Vegas residents, were arrested on different dates and had their homes searched by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, Las Vegas Metropolitan SWAT and Nye County Sheriff’s Office. Those searches turned up evidence of the alleged crimes, including money, police said.

“We are very thankful for the Metropolitan Police Department, for helping us do this search warrant and giving us any detectives needed to help search the residence,” Detective Eric Murphy said. “Metro helped us out a lot.”

The investigation started in October 2014, when money was discovered missing from the local brothel, but the investigation became stagnant after a few months. After more money went missing the case blossomed, which turned up the alleged suspects, police said. More missing money continues to be found, according to police.

Zamari had been removing money prior to doing an exact count of the money, the police investigation revealed.

During one of the missing money instances at the brothel, Aulelava had signed for a number of bags and then a certain number of bags were missing when the money arrived at the bank, police said.

Police used information from the brothel, as well as surveillance video to identify the two suspects.

Both the brothel and Loomis have been cooperating with the Sheriff’s Office, aiding them identify and apprehend their former employees.

As the brothel continues to go through bank records they are finding more instances of missing money, Murphy said.

The arrests in the operation could grow as police think others could be involved in the scheme.

“We’re still looking into that (possibility of more suspects), we believe there are several other suspects,” Murphy said.

When asked if any drugs or weapons were found that could lead to additional charges were found in the investigation, Murphy stated that there were, but they could not discuss those, as the investigation into the items was ongoing.

Shiva was charged with burglary and grand larceny, and Aulelava was charged with two counts of grand larceny. Both were booked into the Nye County Sheriff’s Detention Center. Both have since posted bail.

This is an ongoing investigation and anyone with information is asked to contact the Nye County Sheriff’s Office at 775-751-700 or ncso_detectives@co.nye.nv.us, attention Detective Eric Murphy.

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