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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Massachusetts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, August 15, 2019

Dominican National Pleads Guilty To Identity Theft

Defendant was previously ordered deported, never left, instead assumed identity of a U.S. citizen born in Puerto Rico

BOSTON – A Dominican national formerly residing in Lawrence pleaded guilty yesterday in federal court in Boston to Social Security fraud and aggravated identity theft.

Freddy Tejada-Diaz, 50, a Dominican national formerly residing in Lawrence, pleaded guilty to one count of false representation of Social Security number and one count of aggravated identity theft. U.S. District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns scheduled sentencing for Nov. 13, 2019. Tejada-Diaz will be subject to deportation proceedings upon completion of his sentence.

On Aug, 1, 2016, Tejada-Diaz applied for a Massachusetts identification card using the name, date of birth and Social Security number of a Puerto Rican born United States citizen. At the time of his arrest in April 2019, Tejada-Diaz had an arrest warrant out of Plymouth Superior Court for drug charges and a warrant of removal issued out of a New York immigration court. Tejada-Diaz was identified, among other things, from a fingerprint match to his immigration file bearing his photo, which showed that he was previously ordered removed on Sept. 5, 1996, but did not report to his scheduled immigration hearing. Instead, on Sept. 30, 1996, Tejada-Diaz obtained a Massachusetts identification card in the name of the United States citizen and, until his recent arrest, had been using that identity ever since.

The charge of false representation of a Social Security number provides for a sentence of no greater than five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. The charge of aggravated identity theft provides for a mandatory two year prison sentence, to be served consecutive to any other sentence imposed, one year of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.  

United States Attorney Andrew E. Lelling; Jason Molina, Acting Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; and Scott Antolik, Special Agent in Charge of the Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General, Office of Investigations, Boston Field Division, made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney Lindsey E. Weinstein of Lelling’s Major Crimes Unit is prosecuting the case.

Topic(s): 
Identity Theft
Component(s): 
Updated August 15, 2019