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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Federal Authorities Prosecute Passport Offenses

SAN FRANCISCO – Federal authorities continue to devote resources to investigating and prosecuting federal passport offenses, announced United States Attorney Melinda Haag and U.S. Department of State, Diplomatic Security Service Special Agent in Charge David Zebley.

Illustrative of the cases being pursued are the following 12 cases, each of which involves a defendant accused or convicted of misrepresenting their identity on applications for United States passports or committing related offenses in violation of either 18 U.S.C. § 1542, false statement in application for a passport, or 18 U.S.C. § 1028, fraud in connection with identification documents:

CONVICTED:

Trinidad Campos Castro, of King City, Calif., was convicted of applying for a United States passport using another person’s birth certificate and related Social Security Administration benefit fraud.  Castro was sentenced to eight months of imprisonment in September, 2014, and was ordered to repay $25,641 in restitution to the Social Security Administration.

Erick Jimenez, formerly of San Rafael, Calif., was convicted of applying for a United States passport and falsely stating that he was born in the United States.  Jimenez was sentenced to eight months of imprisonment and three years of supervised release in October, 2014.

Jesus Sanchez Bastidas, formerly of Santa Rosa, Calif., was convicted of applying for a United States passport and falsely stating that he was born in the United States.  Bastidas was sentenced to five months of imprisonment and three years of supervised release in October, 2014.

Richard Emmett Monroe, of Windsor, Calif., was convicted of applying for a United States passport and falsely stating his name.  Monroe was sentenced to nine months of imprisonment and one year of supervised release in December, 2014.

Jamall Robinson, a/k/a Shakir Bey, formerly of Oakland, Calif., was convicted of conspiring to falsely state his name on an application for a United States passport.  Robinson was arrested in January, 2015.   Robinson’s scheduled sentencing is set for 9:30 a.m. on June 5, 2015, in front of the Honorable John S. Tigar, United States District Judge, in Oakland.

Neil Kennedy Lockhart, of Oakland, Calif., was convicted of applying for a United States passport and falsely stating he was born in the United States.  Lockhart’s sentencing is scheduled for 11:00 a.m., September 4, 2015, before  the Honorable Susan Illston, United States District Judge, in San Francisco.

Martha Lidia Donado, of Richmond, Calif., was convicted of possessing a falsely issued United States passport that she obtained by providing biographical information belonging to another person.  Donado was sentenced to three years of probation in April, 2015, and she is responsible to pay restitution to the Social Security Administration in the amount of $40,131.00 for benefits she received under the false identity.

CHARGED  (Please note, charges described in this document contain only allegations and, as with all defendants, the defendants in the cases listed below must be presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.):

Maria Elena Hernandez-Garcia, of Salinas, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a United States passport and falsely stated she was born in the United States.  Hernandez-Garcia was arrested in February, 2014, but fled after being released on bail in December, 2014.  Hernandez-Garcia remains a fugitive. 

Laureano Ayala Pulido, of Sunnyvale, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a United States passport and to have made several false statements, including that  he was born in the United States.   Pulido was arrested in January, 2015, but fled after being released on bail.  Pulido remains a fugitive. 

Rogelio Salazar, of Salinas, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a passport using a false birth certificate and driver’s license.  Salazar was arrested in July, 2014, and his case remains in progress. Salazar’s next scheduled appearance is set for 1:30 p.m. on June 15, 2015 before the Honorable Edwards Davila, United States District Judge, in San Jose.

Arturo Preciado, of San Jose, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a United States passport using a false identity.  Preciado made an initial appearance in March, 2015, and his case remains in progress.  Preciado’s next scheduled appearance is set for 9:30 a.m. on July 1, 2015, beforethe Honorable Lucy H. Koh, United States District Judge, in San Jose.

Alejandro Musso Cortes, of San Jose, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a United States passport and falsely stated his name and Social Security Number.  Cortes was arrested in April, 2015, and his case remains in progress.  Cortes’ next scheduled appearance is set for 9:30 a.m. on June 3, 2015, in front of the Honorable Lucy Koh, United States District Court Judge, in San Francisco

These defendants are part of more than 265 Bay Area residents who have been charged with false passport related offenses since 2007. The prosecutions are the result of ongoing investigations by the Diplomatic Security Service.

Anyone with information about false or fraudulently issued passports or entry visas, or the whereabouts of the above fugitives, is encouraged to contact the Diplomatic Security Service at (415) 705-1176.

Updated June 3, 2015