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03/11/2010

Brazilian national practices dentistry without a license

ICE agents find full dental office in the back of a home

PHILADELPHIA - A Brazilian national was arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Agents, in the Lawndale section of Northeast Philadelphia after finding a dental treatment facility in a house. ICE received a tip on an illegal alien who was practicing dentistry without a license. ICE agents went to the identified address to investigate.

Upon their arrival, the agents met Benedito Xavier-Filho, a Brazilian national, outside the residence. He initially stated that he was a construction worker but during the interview he admitted to working as a dentist. When he took the agents inside the home to get his passport, the agents saw he had a complete dental set-up, to include drills, medicines and a compressor.

ICE agents believe he is in the U.S. in violation of immigration laws. ICE agents placed Filho in removal proceedings. While processing Filho, agents found court records indicating he had previously been arrested and convicted in Virginia. On November 10, 2004, he was convicted in a Virginia criminal court for the offenses Violation of the Professions and Occupations Act and Obtaining Drugs by Fraud. He was sentenced to six to twelve months in jail.

He will be processed administratively for removal from the United States. He is in ICE custody awaiting a hearing before an immigration judge.

The public is encouraged to report suspicious activity by calling ICE's toll-free hotline at: 1-866-DHS-2-ICE (1-866-347-2423). This hotline is staffed around the clock.