Caldwell Woman Pleads Guilty to Mail Fraud and Misuse of U.S. Government Seals
BOISE – Crystal Tijerina, 29, of Caldwell, Idaho, pleaded guilty today in United States District Court to mail fraud and misuse of U.S. Government seals, U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced.
According to the plea agreement, between June 2009 and May 2010, Tijerina devised a scheme to defraud victims by obtaining money by materially false and fraudulent pretenses through the use of the U.S. Mail. Tijerina operated “Soluciones Economicas,” a business which purported to assist aliens with filing immigration paperwork. Tijerina admitted to having accepted money for fraudulent services, and fines and fees purportedly owed to the U.S. Government. Tijerina admitted that, as part of the scheme to defraud, she created fraudulent documents containing U.S. Government seals and mailed them to the victims through the U.S. Postal Service. As part of the plea agreement, Tijerina agreed to pay restitution in the amount of $17,439.
The charge of mail fraud carries a maximum punishment of up to twenty years in prison, a fine up to $250,000, and up to three years supervised release. The charge of misuse of U.S. Government seals carries a maximum punishment of up to five years in prison, a fine up to $250,000, and up to three years supervised release.
Sentencing is set for October 12, 2011, before Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill in Boise.
The case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.
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