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Press Release

Guatemalan Man Sentenced to Prison Following Three Deportations and Document Fraud

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa
Used the Name and Social Security Number of a United States Citizen

A Guatemalan man who had been deported three times, illegally returned to the United States, and then used false identification documents to obtain a job was sentenced May 8, 2018, to six months in federal prison.

Sebastian Batz-Mejia, age 27, a citizen of Guatemala illegally present in the United States and residing in Postville, Iowa, received the prison term after a March 14, 2018, guilty plea to one count of unlawful use of identification documents and one count of illegal reentry into the United States.

At the guilty plea, Batz-Mejia admitted that he illegally returned to the United States after being deported in June 2011, September 2014, and again in October 2014.  Batz-Mejia also admitted that on September 13, 2017, he used a social security card bearing an alias name when completing employment forms to obtain a job in Postville, Iowa.  The alias name and social security account number on the card used by Batz-Mejia belonged to a United States citizen.  Immigration agents became aware of Batz-Mejia’s illegal return to the United States on February 14, 2018, following Batz-Mejia’s arrest under a different alias name in Allamakee County, Iowa, for operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated (OWI). 

Batz-Mejia was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Judge Linda R. Reade.  Batz-Mejia was sentenced to six months’ imprisonment.  He must also serve a three-year term of supervised release after the prison term.  There is no parole in the federal system.

Batz-Mejia is being held in the United States Marshal’s custody until he can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Daniel C. Tvedt and investigated by the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Enforcement and Removal Operations.

Court file information at

The case file number is 18-CR-1004.

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Updated May 9, 2018