News and Press Releases

Men Allegedly Recruited, Housed and Secured Employment for Other Illegal Aliens

September 3, 2009

Two Mexican citizens were arrested this morning and charged with a number of offenses related to the use of false documents and Social Security Numbers. The men were employed as Crew Foreman for one of the largest drywall companies in Washington State. ROGELIO LOPEZ-TIZNADO, 39, of Bothell, Washington, is charged with Making a Materially False Statement, Use and Possession of False Immigration Documents, two counts of Misuse of Social Security Numbers, two counts of False Claim to Citizenship, False Representation of Social Security Number, and Failure to Register with Immigration. GABRIEL PEREZ-ZAMBRANO, 37, of Edmonds, Washington, is charged with Making a Materially False Statement, two counts of Use and Possession of Fraudulent Immigration Documents, three counts of Misuse of Social Security Numbers, False Claims to U.S. Citizenship, and Failure to Register with Immigration. Both men made their initial appearances on the charges at 2:30 this afternoon and were held pending a detention hearing next week.

According to the criminal complaints filed in the case, the men have been the subject of an ongoing investigation using confidential informants. The investigation revealed that PEREZ-ZAMBRANO has been in the U.S. illegally for about ten years. The complaint alleges that PEREZ-ZAMBRANO recruited other illegal aliens from his hometown in Mexico to come to Washington and work for his employer, Ketchikan Drywall Services Inc. of Woodinville, Washington. PEREZ-ZAMBRANO allegedly arranged for the illegal workers to travel to Washington, obtain false documents, and then housed them at his home in Edmonds. PEREZ-ZAMBRANO charged them each as much as $250 a month for their rooms. Some of the charges relate to PEREZ-ZAMBRANO using the false social security number to repeatedly refinance his home mortgage with little documentation other than his stated employment as a drywall crew foreman.

The complaint charging LOPEZ-TIZNADO reveals that he was recruited to come to the U.S. by PEREZ-ZAMBRANO and has lived here for eight years. LOPEZ-TIZNADO allegedly purchased homes in Everett and Bothell where illegal aliens who had been recruited to come to the U.S. to work with LOPEZ-TIZNADO were housed. Between 2005 and the present, the men were paid cash by LOPEZ-TIZNADO for each day they worked in the drywall business at either Ketchikan Drywall Services or DJ Drywall job sites. The men paid rent to live in the basement of LOPEZ-TIZNADO’s home ranging from $200-$380 per month. Both houses have since been foreclosed by the banks following multiple low documentation mortgages.

The charges filed against both men carry penalties of up to ten years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The charges contained in the complaint are only allegations. A person is presumed innocent unless and until he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. The investigation is continuing.

The case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Don Reno. Mr. Reno is an attorney with ICE who is specially designated to prosecute immigration cases in federal court.

For additional information please contact Emily Langlie, Public Affairs Officer for the United States Attorney’s Office, at (206) 553-4110 or Emily.Langlie@USDOJ.Gov.

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