Chet and Adam Taylor, the former owners and operators of Montecito Motors who now face the possibility of decades behind bars for grand theft and forgery, will likely post bail today or tomorrow after a judge found there were no issues with the source of their funding.
Judge Jean Dandona ruled Friday morning that the $16,000 secured for both to post bail was not illegally obtained. Earlier this week, Judge George Eskin had dropped the bail amount for the father and son duo from $1 million each to $100,000 apiece. The two allegedly scammed several car owners out of money in their high-end consignment auto dealership over a six-year span. The company shuttered in late 2010, around the same time authorities began investigating the dealership.
The Taylors’ money will come from three friends of the family: Jose Carrillo, Don Schmidt, and Don Gude. Gude, a retired probation officer with the county who is also Adam’s father-in-law, will be putting up $10,000, while Carrillo and Schmidt will each contribute $3,000.
Normally, a bondsman requires 10 percent of the total bail, which in this case would be $10,000 each for Adam and Chet. But the bondsman, San Diego-based Rodney Price, said he would do it for 8 percent, or $8,000 per person. Price was contacted by Chet’s other son, Seth, he said.
All three men, in testifying before Dandona on Friday, said the money they were giving was a gift, not a loan, and they didn’t expect to be paid back. Through questioning from defense attorneys as well as Senior Deputy District Attorney Brian Cota, who is prosecuting the Taylors, it was determined the money was not cash that could have come from any of the alleged improprieties the Taylors are accused of comitting.
Should the Taylors post bail, Chet will be on house arrest, with limited movement to court appearances and medical appointments. The father and son will be back in court January 13.