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Press Release

Guatemalan citizen living in New Philadelphia previously convicted of creating fake identity documents indicted for making false claim of citizenship and illegally reentering the U.S.

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Ohio

A Guatemalan man living in New Philadelphia was indicted for making a false claim of United States citizenship, as well as illegally reentering the country.

Julio Tzip-Yac, 40, aka Jean Carlos Mercado-Alvarez and Luis O. Hernandez, falsely represented himself to be a U.S. citizen on May 25, 2018. He was able to obtain an Ohio driver’s license while falsely using the identity of an individual in Puerto Rico, according to court documents.

Tzip-Yac was found to be in New Philadelphia on May 25, 2018, despite having been previously deported. Tzip-Yac was previously sentenced to more than three years in federal prison after being found guilty of one count of possession of a document making implement and four counts of transfer of identification documents.

If convicted, the defendant’s sentence will be determined by the Court after review of factors unique to this case, including the defendant’s prior criminal record, if any, the defendant's role in the offense and the characteristics of the violation.  In all cases the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Damoun Delaviz following an investigation by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement -- Homeland Security Investigations, with assistance from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Ohio State Highway Patrol, Federal Bureau of Investigation and New Philadelphia Police Department. 

An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt.  A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.


Mike Tobin

Updated June 3, 2019

Identity Theft