The formal sentencing had all been decided in advance when Alan David Tikal pleaded no contest on Oct. 31, but the prosecutor dropped a few surprises Thursday and shocked both the judge and the defense.
Cameras were not allowed in the courtroom, but our cameras did capture shots of Tikal outside the courtroom talking to his attorney. Tikal flashed a big smile a few moments before Judge Cecelia Carrillos was expected to formally sentence him to time served. But it didn't quite work out that way.
"We put him back in jail," prosecutor David Lim said. "He was remanded and bail was set at $45,000, mainly to ensure that he returns for the sentencing date that was continued on Dec. 21."
A report from the probation officer was what set Tikal back. The probation officer wrote, "It should be noted the defendant still claims to be working in the real estate business saving people's homes."
Tikal told the probation officer he was "earning $7,000 to $7,500 a month." The probation officer described that as "very alarming."
And there was more.
"In July of this year, there was a warrant issued for Mr. Tikal out of Anoka County, Minnesota on a probation violation for a failure to appear," Lim said.
Then the prosecutors produced evidence showing someone named Alan David Tikal filing real estate documents in both Riverside and Stanislaus counties. These are the same type of documents Tikal pleaded no contest to using to falsely transfer property from the bank to himself.
"We were alerted because… actually thanks to the coverage by Channel 7 News and alerts that we put out after the indictment was first issued, all law enforcement agencies have been alerted to the name KATN and Alan David Tikal," Lim said.
The defense cried foul, saying the prosecution knew about these documents for a week but waited until Thursday to spring.
"The issue is due process," defense attorney Fanya Young said. "While he may be in fear of Mr. Tikal fleeing, that's still not a reason not to provide discovery."
The defense also pointed out that Tikal's name appears on the recorded documents, but his signature does not.
"So that's the real issue. The quality of the evidence," Young said. "How can those documents be authenticated? How can they be attributed to him when there's no signature at all?"
She says other people have been acting on behalf of Tikal without his consent.
Sentencing has been postponed to Dec. 21 and Tikal could now face a maximum of three years and eight months in prison.