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Press Release

Woodbridge man convicted of impersonating a federal officer

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Virginia

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A federal jury convicted a Woodbridge man on May 24 on charges of false impersonation of an officer or employee of the United States.

According to court records and evidence presented at trial, Russel Guye Dadzie, 50, was a third-party contractor security guard for federal buildings since at least 2013. Dadzie received training that his authority was limited to the immediate area of the building he was assigned to guard and only during his assigned shift. That training also explains that he is not a federal employee, federal agent, or federal officer, that he should not identify himself as such in any context, and that engaging in this type of misrepresentation could result in criminal charges. Dadzie received this training on multiple occasions, including in January 2023. Access to the buildings to which Dadzie was assigned required Personal Identity Verification (PIV) cards. Dadzie signed agreements with both the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) that he would not use the PIV cards for non-employment-related purposes, that he would not display them to others outside of work, and that he would not use them to coerce, intimidate, deceive, or obtain any privilege, favor, preferential treatment, reward, or personal gain. He signed agreements acknowledging that noncompliance with these requirements might subject him to criminal penalties.

On Sept. 15, 2023, officers with the Prince William County Police Department (PWCPD) approached Dadzie’s vehicle in Woodbridge. Dadzie stated multiple times that he was “with DHS” and that he was a “DHS officer” and a “federal officer.” In lieu of a driver license, Dadzie presented officers with a DHS PIV card to bolster his claims that he was a federal officer. When asked about his vehicle, he challenged police, “You’re asking a federal officer if there’s anything illegal in his vehicle?”

On Nov. 9, 2023, a PWCPD officer encountered Dadzie, noting that the inspection sticker on the windshield of Dadzie’s vehicle was expired. When the officer requested to see Dadzie’s driver license, Dadzie instead showed the officer multiple federal PIV cards he possessed, handed the officer a USAID PIV card, and claimed to be a “federal officer” with USAID.

Dadzie faces a maximum penalty of three years in prison when sentenced on Sept. 12. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Jessica D. Aber, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Derek W. Gordon, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Washington, D.C.; and Peter Newsham, Chief of Prince William County Police, made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Patricia Tolliver Giles accepted the verdict.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jordan Harvey and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Lipkowitz are prosecuting the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:24-cr-51.

This release was edited on May 28, 2024, to correct the date of conviction.


Press Officer

Updated May 28, 2024