Seattle – A 48-year-old Des Moines, Washington, woman was arrested August 14, 2022 after initially fleeing from federal agents when they went to arrest her August 11, 2022. Jennifer Suazo (aka Jennifer Esperanza) was indicted by a grand jury for five counts of Bank Fraud and two counts of Aggravated Identity Theft. Suazo is now detained at the Federal Detention Center at SeaTac pending trial.
According to the indictment, Suazo allegedly purchased victims’ identifying information from various sources, including the dark web, which she then used to open accounts at financial institutions in the victims’ names and to take over victims’ existing bank accounts. To carry out this fraud, Suazo created identification documents in victims’ names but with her photograph on the ID. Suazo also changed the mailing addresses for the accounts created or taken over so that she would receive all communications about the accounts and thereby hide her fraud and theft from the victims. Suazo also deposited victims’ checks into her personal bank account. Between 2019 and 2022, Suazo allegedly defrauded individual victims and financial institutions of at least $107,472.
Bank Fraud is punishable by up to 30 years in prison. Aggravated Identity Theft is punishable by a mandatory minimum two-year sentence to run consecutive to any sentence imposed on other counts of conviction.
The charges contained in the indictment are only allegations. A person is presumed innocent unless and until he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
The case is being investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service with assistance from the Des Moines Police Department.
The case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Jessica Ly.
Press contact for the U.S. Attorney’s Office is Communications Director Emily Langlie at (206) 553-4110 or Emily.Langlie@usdoj.gov.