DOMINICAN DOCTOR SENTENCED IN FINGERPRINT ALTERATION SCHEME
BOSTON, Mass. - A Dominican doctor was convicted and sentenced today in federal court of conspiring to conceal illegal aliens from detection by altering their fingerprints.
Jose Elias Zaiter-Pou, 62, of the Dominican Republic, pleaded guilty and was sentenced today before U.S. District Judge Douglas P. Woodlock to conspiring to conceal illegal aliens from detection by law enforcement authorities.
Zaiter-Pou, a doctor by trade, was convicted of conspiring to surgically alter the fingerprints of illegal aliens in exchange for payment. Specifically, Zaiter-Pou arrived at a hotel in Woburn, where he met with a government informant and agreed to alter the informant’s fingerprints for $4,500, bringing surgical equipment, antibiotics and pain medication to the meeting. During the meeting, which was audio and video recorded by law enforcement, Zaiter-Pou described how he would surgically remove a portion of the fingertip, then suture the tip back together to make a new, unrecognizable fingerprint.
After the plea hearing, Judge Woodlock also sentenced Zaiter-Pou today to 12 months and one day of imprisonment, to be followed by three years of supervised release. The judge also ordered that Zaiter be deported to the Dominican Republic at the end of his prison sentence.
On October 29, 2010, co-defendant Luz Martinez-LeBron pleaded guilty to one count of conspiring to shield illegal aliens from detection, and was sentenced to six months (time served) to be followed by three years of supervised release. Co-defendant Ricky Baez-Cruz is charged with one count of conspiring to shield illegal aliens from detection and one count of illegal re-entry after deportation. His case is still pending.
United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz and Bruce M. Foucart, Special Agent in Charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Office of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston made the announcement today. The case was investigated by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement, with assistance from the Essex Sheriff’s Department and the Woburn Police Department. It was prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Jerry DeMaio of Ortiz’s Major Crimes Unit.