A Los Angeles County sheriff's reserve deputy was arrested Wednesday and accused of stealing two large diamonds and committing mail fraud, authorities said.
Billy Lulo, 47, of West Covina, was released on $20,000 bail and ordered to appear in federal court in El Paso, Texas on Sept. 17 to face the charges.
Lulo, who was authorized to go on patrol and carry a gun, was stripped of his badge when the allegations came to light, sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore said.
Lulo owns Global Rings in downtown Los Angeles and displays his status as a reserve deputy on advertisements for his business.
Lulo is accused of agreeing to sell two diamonds - a 10-carat stone and a 22-carat stone - for victims in Texas, then returning the rings to them without the diamonds, according to FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller.
The diamonds were worth several hundred thousand dollars, Eimiller said.
Lulo, reached by email, told NBC4 he was innocent.
"All of the allegations are false and the truth will come out," Lulo wrote.
He did not answer the door of his West Covina home when NBC4's Robert Kovacik knocked on Wednesday night.