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Press Release

Mexican Citizen Sentenced to 26 Months for Misuse of a Social Security Number and Aggravated Identity Theft

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of New York
Alejandro Hernandez Ordered to Pay Over $1 Million for Fraudulently Obtained Medical Services

SYRACUSE, NEW YORK – Alejandro Hernandez, a/k/a Eddy Wilkins, age 69, a citizen of Mexico, pled guilty and was sentenced yesterday to time served (26 months in prison) for misusing a Social Security Number and aggravated identity theft.  He also was ordered to pay restitution of $127,739.32 to the Van Duyn Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing (“Van Duyn”) and $946,801.83 to the State University of New York Upstate Medical University Hospital (“SUNY-Upstate”).  The announcement was made by United States Attorney Grant C. Jaquith, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Buffalo Field Office Director of Operations Thomas Feeley, and Special Agent in Charge John Grasso of the New York Field Office of the Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General. 

In pleading guilty, Hernandez acknowledged that in October 2016, he was admitted as a patient to SUNY-Upstate in Syracuse. At that time, he identified himself as Eddy Wilkins and provided a Social Security Number.  He knew at the time he made those statements that the Social Security Number that he presented was not his own and was assigned to another person.  He made the false representations for purposes of billing for his medical expenses and in an effort to use the number to receive care at SUNY-Upstate.  The defendant was later admitted to Van Duyn where he again provided a false name and Social Security Number for the purposes of billing for medical expenses and to obtain care.  Hernandez was provided medical care by both facilities, resulting in unpaid charges of slightly more than $1 million. 

Upon being sentenced yesterday, Hernandez was taken into custody by the Department of Homeland Security on an immigration detainer. He faces further civil proceedings in Immigration Court. 

This case was investigated by the United States Department of Homeland Security – Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Social Security Administration Office of Inspector General, and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael D. Gadarian.

Updated February 13, 2020

Identity Theft