Girard Damien Saenz is the man who was arrested as part of a mysterious raid on a multi-million-dollar Bel-Air mansion owned by the former mistress of the son of billionaire oil tycoon J. Paul Getty. Thousands of guns were found during the search and stunning images of the weapons and ammunition laid out on the ground in front of the mansion went viral.
On Wednesday, officials investigating the illegal selling and manufacturing of weapons reported over 1,000 guns and firearms were recovered from Cynthia Beck’s home in Bel-Air, California. Members of the Los Angeles Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) were working together after obtaining a search warrant for the $7 million home in one of the most affluent neighborhoods in LA.
Beck, the former mistress of billionaire Gordon Getty, with whom she shares three children, was not at the property when the official search and seizure took place, and if she has any involvement in any either the weapons or the search warrant is unknown. One man was arrested inside the house for the crime of selling, possessing or transporting illegal assault weapons. The suspect in custody was identified by the police as Girard Saenz, who goes Gerry Saenz, who’s a 57-year-old licensed contractor with ties to Beck. Public records show that he and Beck are longtime business partners, and that they own a collection of properties together
From this 8,200-square-foot, five-bedroom home sitting in one of the most expensive neighborhoods in Southern California, LAPD Lieutenant Chris Ramirez said they recovered gun of all makes, calibers and models, along with more than 1,000 rounds of live ammunition.
Here’s what you need to know about Girard Damian Saenz:
1. Saenz Is Cooperating With the Investigation & Was Released From Jail After Posting $50,000 Bail
Gerry Saenz was held by police on $50,000 bond, and bailed out the following day. Formal charges have not been filed. “This is a big stash,” Lieutenant Ramirez said. “It’s beyond comprehension that somebody can have so many weapons in a residence like this, in a neighborhood like this.” In the video obtained by KTLA Sky5 News, you can see officers taking a man in dark clothing into custody outside the home.
The LAPD said they are still working through the weapon and ammunition haul, the seized collection includes modern firearms, antique Civil War rifles, shotguns, handguns and weapon manufacturing equipment. “I had never seen so many weapons in my career of 31 years,” Ramirez said. “That’s such a big arsenal in a residence like this, in this type of neighborhood. It’s astounding.”
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) received an anonymous tip and obtained a search warrant before raiding Beck’s Bel Air home. ATF spokeswoman Ginger Colbrun said in a statement the tip called in claimed someone was “conducting illegal firearms transaction outside the scope of the federal firearm license that the individual possess.”
2. His Fiancée Was a Former Aide of Larry Lawrence, the Disgraced Owner of the Hotel de Coronado
While working as an aide to Larry Lawrence, owner the San Diego’s iconic beachside resort, Hotel del Coronado, and a former ambassador to Switzerland under President Bill Clinton, Norma Nicolls discovered her boss’s purported claim of war-time service was a lie, and testified to Congress that Lawrence had her research World War II merchant ships so he could claim to have fought in the North Atlantic Battle. After what became known as “Gravegate,” Lawrence’s body was exhumed from the Arlington Cemetery.
According to the Coronado Eagle, Nicolls, who’s now 81 according to My Life, was still working for Lawrence, when Saenz, her fiancé at the time, led the design team for the restoration and remodeling of the Lawrence’s Crown Manor. He first opened his own company, Gerry Saenz & Associates, which specialized in architectural environmental lighting and landscape design at 120 C Ave., a condo building in Coronado. His staff of four included a licensed architect and two environmental designers, and his worked was featured in the book “The Complete Home Organizer,” written by organizational designer Maxine Ordesky.
3. Saenz Is a Licensed Contractor & His Office Building Is Owned By Beck
The current office building for Gerry Saenz & Associates is located in downtown Los Angeles at 728 N Bunker Hill Ave, Los Angeles, CA, 90012, which is owned by Beck. According to Buildzoom, Saenz is licensed contractor in the state of California, and their BuildZoom score of 92 ranks in the top 32% of 336,931 California licensed contractors.
Public records show that the Bel-Air home, located at 111 N Beverly Glen Boulevard, isn’t the only property Beck shares with Saenz. They are also co-owners of a 4 bedroom home at 1190 West Sunset Boulevard, which the bought for $405,000 in 2007, along with two of Beck’s daughters, Kendalle and Nicolette.
4. This Isn’t The First Time The Bel-Air Home Has Had Legal Issues
According to court documents, during Beck V. Morris, Polich & Purdy LLC, in which the neighbors of the Bel-Air home currently under investigation, Saenz, is referred to during the case as her partner, agent, and litigation consultant, and was deposed in the case.
The legal issues for the Bel-Air home started in January 2001, when Beck bought Beverly Glen home and Old Republic was her title insurer. In October 2001, she notified Old Republic that her next door neighbors, Ned and Marcia Goldstein, had torn down a wall and expanded a pool, creating an encroachment. The Goldsteins filed suit against Beck on November 7, 2001, and the legal battle went on for eight years.
In the end, Beck was ordered to pay the Goldsteins $6 million in compensatory and punitive damages. Two years later, the next door neighbors won another case against Beck, and she was ordered to pay the Goldsteins’ legal costs, which totaled to $446,302.21.
5. Beck and Saenz Are Extremely Private Business Partners
While Beck was not at the Bel-Air house during the investigation of her home which produced a shocking amount of weaponry and fire-arms, the most information known of her whereabouts is that she’s somewhere in Europe, perhaps Spain. She owns twenty properties in the Los Angeles area that total to a $60 million real estate portfolio, but doesn’t reside in any of them. She and Getty kept were able to keep their secret family under the radar for 14 years, so if anyone knows how to evade the public spotlight, it’s Beck.
Little is also known about Gerry Saenz, the current status of his family, and if or any he has involvement in the thousands of guns seized at the Bel-Air home.