A renegade landscaper who allegedly cut a wide swath through Contra Costa and Santa Clara counties – targeting the elderly for upfront payments on jobs he then abandoned – has pled guilty to all charges pending against him in Santa Clara County and faces additional charges for alleged crimes in Contra Costa.
Adan Contreras Rivas, who has lived in Concord but who was most recently arrested in Oregon, faces five years and eight months in prison for crimes committed in Santa Clara County and is expected to be transferred to Contra Costa for trial on fresh charges next month.
Investigators were also looking for members of Rivas’ family who allegedly participated in some of the scams.
Investigators said Adan Rivas victimized more than two dozen Bay Area families by soliciting landscaping and tree removal services. According to investigators, Rivas usually focused his attention on more affluent neighborhoods, often targeting the elderly. It’s alleged that after reaching an agreement with a homeowner, Rivas would take an excessive down payment and then abandon the job.
When Rivas was added to the Contractors State License Board’s Most Wanted list in July 2015, most of the alleged crimes had occurred in the cities of Danville, San Ramon, Alamo, Lafayette, Orinda, and Walnut Creek.
In October 2016 investigators believed Rivas was using the name Orlando Parras of Parras Landscaping and Pavers and victimized homeowners in both Alameda and Santa Clara Counties before moving north to Medford, Oregon, where he was arrested before eventually being returned to Santa Clara County for trial.
Investigators said Rivas took roughly $115,000 from victims in Santa Clara County alone.