Man arrested in connection with scam for free room in South City hotel pleads not guilty 

A man arrested on burglary, grand theft and false identification charges after allegedly falsely claiming he was a recipient of aid from the Red Cross to stay at a South City hotel pleaded not guilty to the charges on Monday, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office.

Ryan Anonuevo, 46, reportedly checked into the La Qunita Inn in South San Francisco on at least two occasions between Aug. 14 and 22 and convinced the employees there that the Red Cross was providing the room for him because his house had burned down and that he was a cancer patient, prosecutors said.

He is alleged to have provided a name and phone number of a Red Cross employee and an email confirming his claim. A hotel employee called the number and talked to someone claiming to work for the Red Cross and confirming the defendant’s story, prosecutors said. The hotel became wise to the alleged scam after the Red Cross refused to pay the first bill, prosecutors said.

Anonuevo was appointed an attorney through the county’s private defender program and he pleaded not guilty to the charges on Monday, prosecutors said. He is scheduled to return to court Sept. 5 at 2 p.m. for a preliminary hearing.

He remains in custody on $25,000 bail.

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