United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner
Eastern District of California
Ontario Man Pleads Guilty in Dismantled Document Fraud Operation
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Docket #: 1:12-cr-130-AWI
FRESNO, Calif. — Ubaldo Castillo-Hernandez, 41, of Ontario, Calif., pleaded guilty today to conspiring with eight others to produce and sell false identification documents in Fresno, Tulare, and Madera Counties.
According to his plea agreement, between January and April 2012, Castillo-Hernandez participated in a conspiracy to produce false identification documents. Members of the conspiracy took customer orders for fraudulent documents, produced false identification documents and delivered and sold them to customers for between $90 to $124 for a set of documents that included a forged social security card and an alien registration card. During the course of the conspiracy, Castillo-Hernandez possessed document-making implements, materials and supplies, and false identification documents, including driver’s licenses.
“Trafficking in counterfeit documents poses a serious security vulnerability and contributes to a host of other types of crimes, including identity theft and financial fraud,” said Mike Prado, resident agent in charge of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Fresno. “These investigations are a top enforcement priority for HSI -- our goal is to identify and ultimately dismantle the criminal organizations behind these highly lucrative schemes.”
This case was the product of an extensive investigation by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) with assistance from the Fresno County Sherriff’s Office Air Support Unit. Assistant United States Attorney Christopher Baker is prosecuting the case.
Castillo-Hernandez is scheduled to be sentenced on February 4, 2013, before United States District Judge Anthony W. Ishii. The maximum statutory penalty he faces is five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.