BOSTON - A Boston man was convicted today in federal court of making a false statement in a passport application used to elude capture for second-degree murder.
Arnaldo Lopes, 42, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Joseph L. Tauro to making a false statement in a passport application.
Had the case proceeded to trial, the Government’s evidence would have proven that in October 1995, a warrant was issued for Lopes’s arrest in Boston in connection with another individual’s fatal injury. When the arrest warrant issued, Lopes had already fled the area. While Lopes remained wanted in Mass., he obtained a Maryland driver’s license and a New York State birth certificate, both in the name of a United States citizen with the initials M.E.H., whom Lopes knew to be a real person. In June 2001, Lopes was indicted for second-degree murder in Suffolk County. A few weeks later, Lopes appeared at a Maryland post office and presented a completed passport application, along with the birth certificate and Maryland driver’s license in the name of M.E.H. In applying for a U.S. passport, Lopes swore that all of the information he provided was true and accurate. Lopes received a passport in M.E.H.’s name and used this passport to leave and re-enter the country at least twice, including in April 2007, during his re-entry into the U.S. at Miami International Airport. He was arrested the same day at the Baltimore/Washington International Airport, as he disembarked from a connecting flight from Miami to Baltimore.
Judge Tauro scheduled sentencing for July 11, 2012, at 2:15 p.m. Lopes faces up to 10 years in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release, restitution and a fine.
U.S. Carmen M. Ortiz (Massachusetts); U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein (Maryland); and John Schilling, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Department of State’s Diplomatic Security Service’s Washington Field Office, made the announcement today. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Scott L. Garland of Ortiz’s Cybercrimes Unit and Robert Hur of Rosenstein’s Criminal Division..