UPDATED: Martial arts instructors charged with five felonies

Skoth Ly (left) and Ston Lee (right), of the Ston Skoth Martial Arts Academies in Lancaster, are facing five felony counts for allegedly kidnapping at least two victims in September. In one incident, a teen was allegedly tortured with lit cigarettes and Samurai swords, sheriff's officials said. (Booking photos courtesy LASD)

Skoth Ly (left) and Ston Lee (right), of the Ston Skoth Martial Arts Academies in Lancaster, are facing five felony counts for allegedly kidnapping at least two victims in September. In one incident, a teen was allegedly tortured with lit cigarettes and Samurai swords, sheriff’s officials said. (LASD booking photos)

LANCASTER – Two local martial arts instructors have been charged with five felonies for allegedly kidnapping and assaulting at least two victims in September, authorities said.

Ston Lee, 34, and Skoth Ly, 33, were each charged Tuesday with two counts of kidnapping, two counts of assault by means likely to produce great bodily injury, and one count of torture, according to the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office. The criminal complaint identifies two victims and alleges that the incidents took place on September 23 and 24.

Both suspects appeared in an Antelope Valley courtroom Tuesday and pleaded not guilty to the charges, according to the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office.

Sheriff’s detectives were not immediately available for comment on Tuesday. In a statement issued last week, detectives said an 18-year-old male was kidnapped on September 24 in Lancaster and tortured with lit cigarettes, cut with Samurai swords, and beaten. The teen was later released in the area of 20th Street West and Avenue J, sheriff’s officials said previously.

On Nov. 7, authorities served search warrants at the Ston Skoth Martial Arts Academies on 10th Street West and 45th Street West in Lancaster and recovered Samurai swords from both locations.

That day, deputies detained Skoth Ly at a residence on the 44000 block of Gadsden Avenue and detained Ston Lee at a home on the 8300 block of West Avenue F, where deputies also recovered a firearm, drug paraphernalia, and a hydroponic marijuana grow.

Ly and Lee were booked at the Lancaster Station jail Nov. 7 on suspicion of kidnapping, torture and cultivating marijuana, sheriff’s officials said previously. However, the complaint filed Tuesday did not list any drug offenses.

According to the criminal complaint, prosecutors are recommending that bail for each suspect be set at $1.1 million. Ly and Lee remain in custody at the county jail. A preliminary hearing to determine if there’s enough evidence to carry the case to trial is set for Friday, Nov. 22, according to the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office.

UPDATED 12/3/13: The preliminary hearing for Ston Lee and Skoth Lee, originally set for Nov. 22, was instead postponed until Dec. 3. On Dec. 3, both suspects appeared in an Antelope Valley courtroom, however, the preliminary hearing was delayed again, this time until Tuesday, Dec. 17. We will continue to follow this story.

Previous related story: Suspects arrested for kidnapping, torture, marijuana grow

  46 comments for “UPDATED: Martial arts instructors charged with five felonies

  1. jason
    May 21, 2014 at 12:54 am

    when i was in high school, brandon, Krishna, david, and me all sat at the Asian table in high school i knew them from yins when i was like 6, always thought there sister was hott lol i kicked it with sven back in the day i knew her in elementry she was always sweet.. skot ston used to work out at 24 hour fitness, and always kidnapped i guess teens to go at the back of lancaster elementry and beat someones ass and leave him stranded, as far as i can remember they always did that. i dont know if anyone knows billy hes black hes also a martial artist and he told me, that skot got his ass wooped after billys friend went to his studio and spared him, so yea skot might be good but any ufc or wing chun martial artist will dominate that stolen Korean tae kwon do crap.. they know , shoot any good boxer will punish all those pointless kicks, get mayweather a 45 and 0 boxer thats what i call skills just smash his tae kwon do face in..get a wing chun master using no kicks just punish the life out him with hand techniques, there style is pointless stolen from yin and not original, learn wing chun or boxing its funner and a better form of martial arts even bruce lee too went to wing chun into jeet koon do, never tae kwon do, take thai boxing one of the most deadly martial artists alive in thai land cambodia,..take your kids to a boxing class instead hell love it way more theres no belts no stupid forms just punch!!!!! in any case ive known these guys since i was 6, there were cool when they didnt do drugs, but they were always trying to be better with there walking on wall flip kicks ????? i remember there Olympians!!! they have tropheys for dudes standing on there shoulders to fly and kick for what??? yea looks cool but really??? and they say well i know all tegas and all poomsaes and that makes you a martial artist i learned all poomsaes tegas on youtube !!!!!!!!!!

  2. KimProVal
    May 14, 2014 at 5:38 pm

    To Whom It May Concern,

    I am Anthony Valdivia’s Mother. Can you guess what I am about to say?
    Let’s see if your “smart” enough. My son had very little to do with any of this.
    The proof is, my son was on Facebook and the telephone talking to me about
    his girlfriend. I went back to the Messages Archives and brought up any and all
    of the conversation we had durring this time. So, if my son gets jail time
    wrongfully, Ma Ma Bear will come out. I will be the one to press charges.
    L.A. Countys finest will have to take care of there responsiblities.

  3. cc
    March 27, 2014 at 11:37 am

    Does anyone know the latest on the Ston and Skoth case? Have they had a trial? Are they still in jail? The school in Quartz Hill reopened under a different name, but all of Ston, Skoth, and Siveen’s picutures are decorating the walls. What’s up with that? Thanks for any info. you might have.

    • Eric
      March 27, 2014 at 11:44 am

      LASD.ORG has a utility for searching current inmates. It’ll tell you their housing location and next court date.

  4. [removed]
    November 22, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    has anyone that had there child enrolled in the martial arts acadmeny get there refund back cause im still waiting for mine, im sure they can pay it idc if it is drug money i just want a refund. :)

    • I agree
      November 22, 2013 at 7:34 pm

      All the students need to form a coalition and file a class action lawsuit for tuition reimbursement and perhaps retroactive tuition reimbursement for having been taught by frauds.

      • Anonymous
        January 25, 2014 at 2:33 am

        I so agree with that statement. After 4 months of being there I paid for the rest of the 8mos left on my contract for my 2 kids along with the 9mos left on my contract for myself. Cost around $2000, to find out & realize that Skoth was pulling anybody and everybody off the streets, including, but not limited to tweekers, making them black belts, to then have them teach the class. That alone is breach of contract. At one point in time he even tossed the idea to put stripper poles in the studio and have strippers from Zebras in Rosamond come in and teach an “aerobic” class. Talk about disrespect. I am a person that makes my mind up about the integrity of a person(s) and/or business based on my own knowledge and their actions shown to me directly. I had a friend recommend their studio, shortly after I start to hear talk about their not so good business, but give them a try considering my friend said don’t believe everything you hear. Well what was being said around town turned out to be true. There are many kids in the antelope valley, as well as their parents that have been defrauded by these two men. I know one of the victims, and I do believe some of what he says is exaggerated. However, no child, teen or not deserves to be burned, kidnapped, or beat up. There are laws here in the U.S. and should be followed. Allow the authorities to do their job. We are not in Cambodia, therefore they should have not handled the situation as if they were still in their home country. What most of the public doesn’t know, Skoth was warned first hand about Adam and that he can be trouble. Skoth befriended him and allowed him to stay at the studio upstairs so long as he cleaned up the studio and brought single girls around for him. There is so much more to all of this, but no one wants to hear about the shadyness of these two brothers. It’s unfortunate that it came to this and no the family name and business is being drugged through the mud. Reap what you sow.

    • curious
      January 24, 2014 at 5:09 pm

      How funny when things go south, every one climbs on board!

  5. Brian m.
    November 22, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    They didn’t do it because they needed to. They did it to play out their fantasy of being some type of powerful and feared bad-boys. They used samurai swords because it falls into the narrative of the “Asian mafioso” motif they try to embody. Shows over boys. Have fun in jail.

  6. David Mac
    November 22, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    I have to laugh at how these two clowns had everyone convinced of their good character. All of you who are claiming you “know them”, don’t have a clue about the way they comport themselves behind the scenes. Their long time fascination with organized crime is NOT commensurate with the ethical character of a martial artist. You can’t be a master until you master yourself. And cowardly bullying a teenager means you haven’t learned anything about the Martial Arts. They art NOT masters. They deserve to be brought to justice. The charade is over Ston and Skoth.

    November 21, 2013 at 5:48 pm

    Since back in high school they’ve always been infatuated with movies like scarface and the godfather. Ston always idolized Tupac and tried to emulated that lifestyle. From the tattoos to the pit bull, to selling weed and flashing his handgun for no reason. He’d carry around three thousand dollars cash in his pocket and flash it and wink at you. Normal people keep it in the bank, he’d carry it around as a prop.

    In high school he got in an argument with some cholo kid. They agreed to meet after school. When we did ston didn’t fight, he had Another friend bobby a attack the guy. Others jumped in while ston stayed safely in the background. The next morning when the campus police questioned him he ratted us out and we all got suspended. That’s typical ston. Start [removed] and make others take the fall.

    Yes that was a long time ago. But they’ve never changed. That’s why all their friends from those times have broken off the friendship.

    Our other friend loaned him his car after Ston kept bugging him to borrow it. Ston drove it like a maniac and ended up totaling it. It only had liability insurance and so he lost his car. Not only did ston fail to pay for it, but he never even apologized.

    I could go on for days with these stories. But I think u get the point. All you people claiming to know him are full of it. You think you know him but u don’t. I’ve known him since the early nineties. And these charges that he’s facing are EXACTLY the type of [removed] I would expect from him and skoth.

    • They were known
      January 28, 2014 at 1:10 pm

      I know him… You should leave out peoples names of stuff that has happened unless you want to post your real name…. Also when referring to the past yes Ston was what he was … But not Skoth, he changed over the years.

  8. SayIsaidIt
    November 20, 2013 at 12:17 am

    Cigarette burns and Samori Swords?
    Can we see the marks please.
    I want to see the marks.

    I’ve known Ston since I was a youngin.
    So hard to believe this story
    HOWEVER, No judgement. Whether innocent or guilty.

    (ya’ll ninjas commenting need jesus)

  9. Superv
    November 19, 2013 at 10:29 pm

    sound like an 18 yrs teen got his a** beat and decided to blame someone he didn’t like. Reason why it took a lot of investigation to even make up a motive, teen probably got hate for them and decided to lie and probable new them good enough to even make up a believable story. Anyone can point fingers, let see if those swords even have his DNA on them. and who cares about the weed (harmless) and parolee was probably given shelter. for those who know Ston Lee, he has always helped out. And those who are so fast to judge one day, someone will point a finger at you and say “he /she did it, I saw him/her.” and the victim is going to 100% sure it was you and remember how fast you where at judging other because it will be your turn.

    • Josh
      November 21, 2013 at 4:32 pm

      No. Sounds more like two egotistical [removed] who think they are mafioso are playing yakuza with easy targets. They’re in there thirties. A real G would send some teenaged goons to deal with their teenaged enemies. These dudes are just a couple of [removed] who have followers like you believing their [removed].

  10. Saahil Shah
    November 18, 2013 at 5:56 pm

    Wow, this is truly appalling news for me; I started taking lessons with these instructors when I was 8, and I only recently stopped when I was 14. For as long as I stayed there, the studio seemed really good and I was getting a lot better; I even got to my black belt after 4 years. I had no problems with either instructor at the time, and I held both in high regard. I never saw Skoth as much since I trained at the Quartz Hill studio, but Master Ston was always one of the people I looked up to most. He taught me so much about discipline, respect, and more, lessons I will never forget. It’s naturally very difficult for me to believe that this man could be guilty of such a horrible crime. Whenever I saw how he treated his students, he was always extremely kind and affectionate towards them, even when they disobeyed him. When I recall the love he showed to his son and other students at the studio, it seems impossible that he could have tortured anyone, let alone someone so young. Even though I haven’t seen either of the two instructors in a while, from my experiences with them, this news seems unbelievable.

  11. Runswithscissors
    November 16, 2013 at 10:20 pm

    One of the victims from kidnapping aske to use my cell,right after it happened.I was shocked how beat up he was.Thats all I know of story.

  12. Neighbor
    November 16, 2013 at 6:26 pm

    “They seemed like such nice boys, I never saw this coming.”

    For all the disbelievers out there, remember sometimes people hide who they really are or sometimes just make dumb decisions or snap. Drug use does not help the matter, even MJ alters a person’s mind.

  13. I've seen it all
    November 15, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    People amaze me with their comments. “They wouldn’t/ couldn’t do that”. “I don’t believe it”.

    A teenager says he was kidnapped, tortured, & beaten. That’s a lot of evidence. Those wounds don’t heal easy. He points the finger at them. Obviously, the deputies had reason to believe him. Then, the district attorney filed on them. They don’t do that unless they know they can win at trial. They even found a marijuana grow operation and a convicted felon with a gun at their house.

    Tell me again how these are great guys who couldn’t have done this…

    • Holli
      November 17, 2013 at 9:57 am

      I knew both of them, and yes it seems so unbelievable. BUT, in this case, you are right, the D.A wouldn’t file charges if there wasn’t enough evidence to take it to trial.

      For me, that is the most unbelieveable part. That there is some evidence suggesting that they did this.

      Don’t forget, innocent until proven guilty.. Let’s wait to cast judgment when the evidence comes to light.

      • guilty
        November 18, 2013 at 12:27 am

        These people are guilty. This is a small valley where people talk. These guys are now the shame of martial arts, and deserve no respect. There must be evidence in this case, and for the sake of all involved , may judgment come down hard. Make an example out of these people- The Antelope Valley will not tolerate such people, people who will kidnap and torture. When the news paper reports torture they do not give details. There is no doubt in my mind that this torture must have been horrific. For the sake of everyone involved, including the “students” of these guys (I refuse to call them men, they don’t deserve the word)details need to be heard to see what their real character holds. In jail, they deserve exactly what they gave.

        • sherana
          November 25, 2013 at 11:56 pm

          You are an [removed]. You dont know them. So easy to cast judgement. Look at yourself first. Innocent til proven guilty or Get out of the united states

  14. solim
    November 15, 2013 at 6:06 pm

    i dont believe their guilty i known them for many years and their parents their really good guys they trained me my sister and mom i hope their found inisant

  15. tony
    November 14, 2013 at 8:24 pm

    Just wanting to say innocent until proven guilty we have all been accused of something and found to not be true my son goes to their school and is very happy with there training so in my mind let justice do its job until than I believe that they are innocent!

    • shameful
      November 15, 2013 at 6:07 am

      They don’t arrest people unless they have evidence.These guys are jerks and their reputation ruined. They are in the New York news. Hopefully they will be shunned in the martial arts events in the future. These men deserve to be punished. I am pretty sure they are connected to more than this. The police need to interrogate everyone at this studio and see what other crimes and thugs need to be behind bars. When there is three, there is a network that needs to be shutdown.

      • Elvin
        November 21, 2013 at 4:37 pm

        Your absolutely right. These scumbags have no business teaching children martial arts. They have no honor. They are bullies.

  16. david james
    November 14, 2013 at 4:44 pm

    Ston and Skoth wouldnt do this i know them personally they have alot of respect out here and alot of people look up to these to masters…there black belts lets be real here they wouldnt use any weapons to harm any one there not like that they have to much honor to lose

  17. bibvanna
    November 13, 2013 at 11:29 pm

    I dont believe it .its a shame they trained my son wow

  18. Victor
    November 13, 2013 at 8:52 pm

    I remember ston and skoth from dragon boy days. Alls they ever wanted was to be known for being bad ass and untouchable. They would do anything to prove this. They were so vein and worried a lot about what others thought of them. They were all about that Hollywood show. I remember back in the days when they would smoke a lot of weed to. Many people like martial arts. When one displays the appearance of being able to do good things, people don’t ever expect them to be capable of bad things. A weakness people have due to there way of thinking. I use to train with them. I tried to teach them that there is more to the kicking and punching. I tried to teach them to look to the deeper meaning behind it all. But they only cared about the image and how to make people see and think what they wanted to make that money. I chose to distance myself from them. It’s like they would do good for the eye, but then do wrong in the shadows. And don’t dre snitch on them. Obviously. They were all about the money and the fame. It just got to there heads way to much. To much vein and greed. I believe what they did. I’m surprised the police have not investigated there business partner that runs California sounds. But here is a question. Why the heck did they let them go. See, they think they have control. They think they are running big things. Looks like it finally caught up with them. It sucks when people have families and stuff and they are not willing to come forward and speak up because they are afraid of problems. And how do you know that certain police officers are not part of it? Who’s gonna be the one to step up and speak up. WHO?????!!!!!!!!!

    • Old Yin's Student!
      November 14, 2013 at 7:54 pm

      If this is the person I think it is! Don’t even dare talk about discipline and morals when u have none! If you’re so high and mighty, did you teach yourself morals and values?? Did they teach you about not having intimate relationships with minors????!!?!!! Please, stop preaching and check yourself in rehab!

  19. Doc
    November 13, 2013 at 7:44 pm

    I have known Ston and Skoth since they opened their first studio in 2010. I have always found them to be honorable, honest and friendly. Admittedly, I have not seen them for a few years, but I find these circumstances difficult to believe. I know greater men have succumbed to the lure of drugs/drug money, but these guys had everything a young man could ask for whether American born or immigrant. They are innocent until proven guilty, and innocent or guily, it is a tragedy.

    • And you say you know them!
      December 30, 2013 at 12:28 pm

      They had DOJO’s long before 2010; back in the early 2003, 2004, they were by Gadsden and Avenue K strip mall on the north side. How well do you know them….not very well, if you believe they opened their first STUDIO in 2010.

  20. caligirl
    November 13, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    W O W, whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty? Ever heard of sensitivity training? I believe plenty of it going on around here, what is up with all the harsh attitudes?

  21. Ana
    November 13, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    I used to get trained by Ston back when he was training at Yin’s. So unfortunate that I hear about him again through these circumstances. He was stern, but I learned so much from him while I was at Yin’s. I’ll have to see how this story unfolds.

  22. Cynthia Felts
    November 13, 2013 at 11:15 am

    We enrolled our daughter at their studio on 10th St. The first 3 months were ok, then it seemed things went down hill, they got meaner and meaner, and it was all about the money. Guess that didn’t work as they can’t make bail. Sad their true colors came out. Sorry for the victims. No excuse to hurt anyone no matter what the issue is.

    • sherana
      November 13, 2013 at 11:32 am

      Your comments are ridiculous. Ston and Skoth are outstanding martial artists and gave back to the youth community for over 10 years. My son was at his studio every day they were opened and received his hard earned black belt there. He taught classes with Ston and Skoth and they both gave him life lessons he will take with him on his journey of life. Its sad to see how quickly people jump to the negative and believe guilt over innocence. For the parent who was once at the studio well you were probably one of the typical parents we dealt with whose child had no discipline to begin with and was not committed to the program or knew the word respect. I never saw Ston once treat a child mean. He loves teaching and working with children and would teach them honor,respect and to maintain good grades. I believe in their innocence.

      • to Sherana
        November 13, 2013 at 12:35 pm

        If your child was “helping ” to teach, your son probably had his hand on a joint. Was he helping to water the “special” plants too?

        • sherana
          November 25, 2013 at 11:59 pm

          You are disgusting to say that about my son without even knowing him you piece of garbage. Dare you to say that to my face coward

          • h
            December 4, 2013 at 4:42 pm

            I am not “disgusting”, I don’t need to know your son, but i only need to know the truth. The truth is any teen that was ever left with these “martial arts/smoke weed instructors” smoked weed with them. Of course I would NEVER expect a mother that thinks their child is perfect to ever think their child has smoked pot or been an accessory.I also would NEVER expect this child to admit it either, wake up and smell the skunk, have your child randomly tested, it would have been a good idea to do the same with these instructors.

      • Cynthia Felts
        November 13, 2013 at 3:04 pm

        You should practice what you preach, dear lady. You know nothing about me or my family yet you are passing judgement. Our daughter was in a terrible situation with her birth mother at the time and being abused beyond belief. This all happening while we GOT custody of my husbands daughter. I thought it would be good for her to learn self control and how to manage the anger she had learned from her birth mother. My other 2 daughters had taken Karate with an amazing sensei, received their black belts and have amazing careers. Yet their sensei was NEVER arrested or kidnapped anyone or grew POT. Please tell me again how AMAZING these two are? Our daughter graduated high school at 16 and is now 17 and in college studying science. So tell me again about a “typical parent”, as you seem to not know everything about everybody involved with the studio. I am happy for your son, but not happy for ALL the victims. These 2 put my daughter in terrible danger by calling her birth mother and saying some awful things, so please, I am not passing judgement, I am speaking from fact.

        • BRENDA
          November 14, 2013 at 11:31 am

          How many different versions of your story are you going to post Cindy Felts? You commented on the original story, and the FB page and now on this story, and every time you comment you change your story. How sad it is that you feel you should comment in any way when your main beef is you didnt want to pay your contracted bill and got sued. Liar.

        • brenda
          November 14, 2013 at 11:35 am

          Here is the original comment posted by Cindy Felts. Amazing how the story changed.

          Cynthia Felts November 7, 2013 at 11:15 pm
          Karma is a terrible thing. We had our daughter at their studio and had to pull her due to what we were going through with her birth mother. They refused to cancel our contract and sued us for the amount owing. They even called her birth mother who had nothing to do with our contract and threatened her which in turn put our daughter in danger.

          • Cynthia-
            November 14, 2013 at 4:49 pm

            I am sorry you feel that way. As far as I am concerned there aren’t different “stories” as you stated but that is fine. This isn’t about me, it is about 2 men who longer have the same rights as I do. I am not sitting in jail, I am able to leave my home when I choose and go where I want. Again, I am sorry for the victims in this. It is not up to us to decide guilt or innocence. I stated my experience with their studio and I am sorry you feel this is about me and not the true victims.

  23. Sherrill
    November 13, 2013 at 3:24 am

    That’s crazy..I know both of these guys…Neither of them is a bad guy at all..Sounds like they were retaliating against someone who had probably done something to them…Just sayin’..Known both guys since elementary…That’s sad!

  24. dumbandblind
    November 12, 2013 at 9:56 pm

    Their training will definitely come in handy in jail. As soon as they get tired punching and kicking they will be someone’s wife.

    • Troy
      November 21, 2013 at 5:52 pm

      They might be able to kidnap teenagers but Good luck acting tough with the homies in the big house.

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