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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Dominican National Sentenced for Identity Theft Charges

A Dominican national who previously resided in Lynn was sentenced today in connection with using the identity of a U.S. citizen.

Yohnny Peguero Villalona, 33, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Indira Talwani to two years and one day in prison, one year of supervised release and ordered to pay restitution of $17,220. In March 2020, Peguero Villalona pleaded guilty to one count of false representation of a Social Security number, one count of aggravated identity theft and one count of making a false statement relating to a health care benefit program. Peguero Villalona was arrested in December 2019 and has been detained since that time.

Peguero Villalona used the name and identifiers of a U.S. citizen for at least 13 years, including to obtain a Massachusetts driver’s license and to apply for MassHealth benefits. When he was arrested on unrelated charges, Peguero Villalona used the identity of this U.S. citizen.  Fingerprints taken during the booking process following the prior arrest of Peguero Villalona matched fingerprints showing him to be a citizen of the Dominican Republic. During a search of Peguero Villalona’s residence, a Massachusetts driver’s license and a MassHealth card under the name of the U.S. citizen whose identity Peguero Villalona had fraudulently assumed, were recovered.

United States Attorney Andrew E. Lelling; Michael Shea, Acting Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; and Phillip M. Coyne, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Office of Inspector General made the announcement today.  Valuable assistance was provided by the Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General, Office of Investigations; U.S. Postal Inspection Service; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Enforcement and Removal Operations; U.S. Department of State, Diplomatic Security Service; U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General; U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Inspector General; and the Lynn Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Bill Abely, Deputy Chief of Lelling’s Major Crimes Unit, prosecuted the case.

Topic(s): 
Identity Theft
Component(s): 
Updated August 4, 2020