Oklahoma Man Arrested in Connection with Body Found in Trunk in California

Beverly Cantrell - October 18, 2021 6:27 am

STANTON, Calif. (AP) — An Oklahoma City man was one of two men arrested this weekend in connection with the killing of a man whose body was found in the trunk of a car two years ago in Southern California, authorities said.

A 32-year-old Marina del Rey man was arrested on Thursday in connection with a 2019 homicide of an Irvine man in Stanton, the Orange County Sheriff’s Department officials announced Friday.

Jonathan Ho is being held in the Orange County Jail for the possession of metal knuckles and drug-related charges, the department said.

Ho was arrested along with Nicholas Nguyen, 27, of Oklahoma City. Nguyen was charged with conspiracy to commit murder.

Both men were arrested in connection with a March 2019 incident in which officers were called to the 12000 block of Leafwood Street in response to a suspicious vehicle. Upon inspection of the vehicle, deputies found a dead body in the trunk of the car. The victim was later identified as Jeffery Chang, 31, Irvine.

On Thursday, homicide detectives executed arrests warrants in Marina del Rey and Oklahoma City that led to the arrests of Ho and Nguyen, respectively, police said. In addition to the arrests, police seized three guns, approximately 1,000 fentanyl pills, and 5,000 methamphetamine pills, police said. The street value of the fentanyl is approximately $30,000.

Police said Friday that the motive for the crime and the relationship between the suspects and the victim remains part of the ongoing investigation.

Nguyen is awaiting an extradition hearing to see if he’ll be transported to California.

Investigators said they believe the men were involved in the 2019 killing of 31-year-old Jeffrey Cheng of Irvine.

Deputies found Cheng’s body in the trunk of a car parked in the Orange County city of Stanton on March 8, 2019. There was blood on the outside of the car and the driver’s side window was smashed.

It’s still not clear how Cheng was killed, how long his body was inside the trunk or his relationship to the suspects.


In addition to making two arrests, Orange County sheriff's deputies seized three guns and more than 6,000 pills with a street value of more than $30,000.



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