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Press Release

Man from Albuquerque sentenced to 25 months in federal prison for bank fraud, identity theft and harboring a fugitive

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Mexico

            ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Ernie Thomas Ortiz, 46, of Albuquerque, New Mexico was sentenced in federal court in Albuquerque on May 19 to 25 months in prison for bank fraud, aggravated identity theft and harboring a fugitive.   

            Ortiz pleaded guilty to these offenses on Jan. 10.  According to Ortiz’s plea agreement, he bought a truck from an auto dealership in Sandoval County, New Mexico on March 27, 2019.  Ortiz impersonated another person in the transaction by using the victim’s name and personal identifying information without permission.  Ortiz gave the dealership a check he knew would be used to withdraw funds from the victim’s bank account. 

            Ortiz also harbored a fugitive in Bernalillo County on April 13, 2019.  According to Ortiz’s plea agreement and other public court records, he provided transportation to Jeyden Barnhill to help Barnhill avoid capture by the police.  Ortiz provided transportation to Barnhill knowing Barnhill was wanted by the police for robbery.  In a separate case, Barnhill pleaded guilty to federal robbery and firearms charges on March 24.  Barnhill is facing 20 years in prison under the terms of his plea agreement.

            Ortiz must also serve a three-year term of supervised release after completing his sentence.

            The FBI investigated this case with assistance from the Albuquerque Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul J. Mysliwiec prosecuted the case.

Updated May 27, 2020

Financial Fraud
Identity Theft
Press Release Number: 20-088