RSS

DATELINE: Chicago, Illinois

27 Feb
5 PINOYS CHARGED FOR
U.S. PASSPORT FRAUD
 
By Alex P. Vidal
 
CHICAGO, Illinois –Five Filipinos were among the 16 people recently charged with federal passport offenses in San Francisco, California, reports from the United States Attorney’s Office North District of California said on February 26.
Joseph P. Russoniello, United States attorney, said the 16 Bay Area residents were charged with federal passport offenses between December 2008 and February 2009.
The report was confirmed by Diplomatic Security Service (DSS) special agent-in-charge Patrick Durkin.
The charges are reportedly part of the “zero-tolerance policy” towards impostors who try to obtain authentic American passports as more than 125 Bay Area residents have been similarly prosecuted since 2007.
The five were identified as Efrain Molina, Antonio Flores, Francisco Asis, Victor Topete, and Gloria Paniagua.
Molina, of South Francisco allegedly applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. She was arrested by DSS special agents on December 15, and his case is in progress.
Flores, of San Jose California, was convicted of possessing a fraudulent Social Security Number when he applied for a passport. Flores previously self-surrendered to DSS special agents and was convicted on December 9 and now awaits sentencing.
Asis, of Concord, California, was convicted of possessing a false driver’s
license when he applied for a passport. Asis was previously arrested by DSS special agents and was sentenced to two years probation on December 10.
Topete, of Pittsburg, California, was convicted of possessing a false identification document when he applied for a passport. Topete was previously arrested by DSS special agents and was sentenced to three years probation on December 16.
Paniagua, of Pacifica, California, was convicted of possessing a false identification document when she applied for a passport. Paniagua was previously arrested by DSS special agents and was sentenced to one year probation on January 16.
According to court records and proceedings, the 11 other defendants all made misrepresentations of their identity on applications for passports. They were:
Berta Aldana-Fernandez of San Francisco, is alleged to have possessed an authentic United States passport in a false name. Aldana-Fernadez was previously charged on December 5, and her case is in progress.
Gabriel Zuniga-Murillo of San Lorenzo, California, was convicted of possessing a fraudulent birth certificate when he applied for a passport. Zuniga-Murillo previously self-surrendered to DSS special agents and was sentenced to three years probation on December 16.
Billy Joe Blu Degolyer of Pacifica, was convicted of selling his birth certificate to another person, who then used it to apply for a passport. Degolyer previously self-surrendered to DSS special agents and was convicted on January 22. Degolyer awaits sentencing.
Julio Kleber Lemos Souza of Daly City, California, is alleged to have applied for passport using another person’s birth certificate. Souza eluded arrest on February 2 and remains a DSS fugitive.
Rodigo Carvalho of San Francisco, is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Carvalho eluded arrest on February 2, and remains a DSS fugitive.
Juan Ruiz-Gonzalez of Concord, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Ruiz-Gonzalez was arrested by DSS special agents on February 5, and his case is in progress.
Gabriel Soto-Magana of Santa Rosa, California, is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Soto-Magana was arrested by Department of Homeland Security officers in San Diego on February 14, and is in the process of being transferred to federal court in San Francisco where his case is in progress.
Maria Floreano of Rohnert Park, Califonia, is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Floreano self-surrendered to DSS special agents on February 20, and her case is in progress.
Matthew Blake Morrow formerly of Concord, is alleged to have applied for a passport using counterfeit school records and false witness statements used to prove his identity. Morrow was Indicted on February 18 and is in the process of being transferred from Tennessee state prison to federal court in Oakland, where his case is in progress.
Victor Hugo Barajas of Redwood City, California, is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Barajas was arrested by DSS special agents on February 24, and his case is in progress.
Miguel Peral Cervantes of Berkeley, California, is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Cervantes has agreed to self-surrender to DSS special agents on February 26, and his case is in progress.
The maximum statutory penalties for the offenses they allegedly committed ranges from one to 10 years of imprisonment, although any sentence following conviction was or would be imposed by the court after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence.
Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on February 27, 2009 in 1

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: