Criminal charges unsealed against 12 individuals in wide-ranging scheme to monopolize transmigrante industry and extort competitors near U.S.-Mexico border
HOUSTON – Jesus Duenas-Barajas, 53, a Mexican National illegally residing in Houston, has entered a plea of guilty to submitting a false statement on a U.S. passport application and aggravated identity theft, announced United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson.
On or about Feb. 10, 2012, Duenas-Barajas completed a DS-11 U.S. Passport application at the Westfield Post Office in Houston, using the identity of a boy who had died in 1978. On that application, he represented he was that person and provided the deceased victim’s date of birth, Social Security number and birth certificate.
Evidence indicates Duenas-Barajas had been using the deceased boy’s identity since as early as 1986. During that time, he had also been able to obtain a driver’s license using the deceased boy’s identifiers.
U.S. District Judge Vanessa Gilmore, who accepted the plea, has set sentencing for Oct. 14, 2014. At that time, he faces up to 10 years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 fine for the false statement conviction. For aggravated identity theft, he will also face a mandatory two-year-term of federal imprisonment which must be served consecutively to any other sentence imposed. He is expected to face deportation proceedings after he serves his sentence.
The investigation was conducted by the Department of State and Social Security Administration. Assistant U.S. Attorney Julie Searle is prosecuting.