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Judge Rejects OC Fire Authority’s Effort To Recover Cost In Search For Missing Trabuco Canyon Hikers

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(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

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textalerts180 Judge Rejects OC Fire Authoritys Effort To Recover Cost In Search For Missing Trabuco Canyon Hikers

SANTA ANA (CBSLA.com) — The Orange County Fire Authority will not be reimbursed for the cost of a search for two teenaged hikers near Trabuco Canyon, a judge ruled Friday.

The Authority claimed it was a victim of 19-year-old Nicolas Cendoya who was lost for several days along with his friend Kyndall Jack in April.

After the pair were rescued, authorities found nearly 500 grams of methamphetamine in Cendoya’s car parked at a Trabuco Canyon trail head.

Cendoya pleaded guilty Friday to possession of meth and was sentenced to a drug rehab program.

The agency filed court papers last month asking that Cendoya pay $55,000 in restitution, but an Orange County judge rejected the claim saying there was no legal basis for him to pay for the search costs.

The judge said there was no proof Cendoya was under the influence of drugs when he and Jack got lost, prompting the search.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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