An illegal immigrant from the Dominican Republic pleaded guilty Friday in federal court to passport fraud, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts.
Alejandro Valera, 40, a Dominican national residing in Mattapan, Massachusetts, pleaded guilty to knowingly making false statements in applying for a U.S. passport, Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV said at a scheduling hearing.
“On Nov. 10, 2011, Valera, who, according to court records, has a lengthy criminal record, used the name, date of birth and Social Security number of a U.S. citizen from Puerto Rico to submit a fraudulent application for a passport. He also falsely stated that he had never used any other names or previously applied for a passport, yet, in 2002, Valera unsuccessfully applied for a passport using the same false identity,” says the Justice Department.
Valera faces a sentence of no greater than 10 years in prison, up to three years of supervised release, and a $250,000 fine. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based on the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
In an additional case, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers seized more $300,000 worth of marijuana at the Eagle Pass Port of Entry according to a recent press release.
“Smugglers go to great lengths to get their illicit products into the U.S.,” said Port Director Paul Del Rincon, Eagle Pass Port of Entry. “The training, experience, and dedication of our frontline CBP officers has prevented yet another load of contraband from reaching our communities.”
On Aug. 15, CBP officers at Camino Real International Bridge Import Lot inspected a 2012 Kenworth tractor, pulling a trailer loaded with tile, as it arrived from Mexico. During the inspection, officers discovered 128 bundles of suspected marijuana among the boxes of tile. Officers seized a total of 1,547 pounds of alleged marijuana, worth an estimated $309,525.
The Office of Field Operations is the primary organization within U.S. Customs and Border Protection tasked with an anti-terrorism mission at United State’s ports.