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Mexican man sentenced to 51 months for identity theft, possession of firearm

PHILADELPHIA – A Mexican citizen residing in Reading was sentenced Monday to more than four years in prison and a $2,000 fine following an identity theft investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Juan Pedro Guzman-Zavala, aka Alvaro Julio Luna, 28, was convicted by a jury March 13 of being an alien in possession of a firearm. The defendant elected to go to trial on that charge after pleading guilty to aggravated identity theft and making a false statement in a passport application. Guzman-Zavala, a native and citizen of Mexico who is unlawfully present in the United States, assumed the identity of a U.S. citizen and applied for a passport under that assumed name. Guzman-Zavala also possessed a 9mm handgun despite the prohibition against illegal aliens possessing firearms.

Following his prison sentence, Guzman will be turned back over to ICE for deportation to Mexico.

The Detective Bureau of the Berks County District Attorney’s Office provided assistance in this case, which was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jeanine Linehan.