Former MVA Employee Sentenced for Unlawfully Issuing over 150 Maryland Identification Cards to Illegal Aliens
Greenbelt, Maryland - U.S. District Judge Peter J. Messitte sentenced former Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) employee James Edwin Harrell, age 51, of Beltsville, Maryland today to 40 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release for producing and transferring unlawfully produced identification documents, in particular Maryland Identification Cards issued by the MVA, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein.
U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein stated, “James Harrell sold his government job at the MVA for profit when he unlawfully issued Maryland identification documents on over 150 occasions during the course of many months. His actions betrayed the trust the MVA placed in his hands.”
"Today's sentencing demonstrates our resolve to pursue those individuals who produce and distribute fraudulent identity and employment documents," said James A. Dinkins, Special Agent in Charge for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in Baltimore. "ICE will continue working with our law enforcement partners to address criminal actions that pose a threat to our public safety."
According to the plea agreement and evidence presented at today’s hearing, Harrell worked at the Beltsville Branch of the MVA where he issued driver’s licenses and identification cards. From May 2004 to February 2005, Harrell used his position at MVA to meet with applicants, many of whom were illegal aliens, who wanted to obtain Maryland Identification Cards, learner’s permits or driver’s licenses, but did not have the necessary documentation to legally obtain such identity documents. In return for payment, Harrell assisted these applicants in obtaining over 150 unlawfully produced identification cards.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Internal Investigations Section of the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration Investigation and Security Services Division, for their investigative work. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Harry M. Gruber, who prosecuted the case.