An Orange County man was charged this week with multiple felonies for allegedly impersonating a doctor and performing unlicensed cosmetic procedures on women, a majority of whom were Spanish-speaking.
Elias Renteria Segoviano, 61, was charged with one felony count of the unauthorized practice of medicine, one felony count of false indication of a medical license, and one felony count of perjury, the Orange County district attorney's office said in a news release Thursday.
The district attorney also charged Segoviano with four misdemeanors: one count of misrepresenting himself as a licensed medical practitioner, one count of representation of license not issued to him, one count of misrepresentation of qualifications, and one count of impersonating a professional nurse or pretending to be licensed to practice nursing.
Segoviano is accused of targeting Spanish-speaking women and performing a range of procedures, including Botox and lip and face fillers that used potentially harmful and counterfeit drugs, putting the women at risk, according to the district attorney.
"Medical professionals are highly trained and highly regulated for a reason,” Dist. Atty. Todd Spitzer said in a statement. “These women trusted this individual to have the training and the expertise required to perform these medical procedures, and instead they unknowingly put their very lives in the hands of someone who had no idea what they were doing.”
Segoviano was arrested in July at his office, Botox in Anaheim. Officials said that Segoviano was known by at least three names and used "doctor" in his title. His license plate used “ELIASMD." He used social media to promote his services, officials said.
On its website, Anaheim in Botox claims to "use state-of-the-art equipment" and brings more than "20 years of experience." Videos posted on Botox in Anaheim’s Facebook page show women receiving various cosmetic procedures, including lip and face injections, as a man narrates in Spanish. The most recent post, dated Aug. 2, is a call-out to "take advantage of affordable Botox services in the Anaheim area."
Segoviano appears to have also posted videos on an Instagram account under the handle eliasrenteriasegoviano, which lists "Dr. Elias Renteria Segoviano" as the user and "RN, First Surgeon Assistent" in the bio.
Segoviano, who is currently being held on $1-million bail, pleaded not guilty to all counts. If convicted, Segoviano could face a maximum sentence of five years and four months in state prison.
This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.