Moises Velazquez-Jacobo, 36, of Lowville, N.Y., a citizen and national of Mexico, was charged today by a federal grand jury in Syracuse in a five-count indictment. He was arrested March 7, 2012. According to court documents, on two separate dates in January 2012, he knowingly transferred false documents which included false Social Security cards and false alien registration cards, also known as "green cards." On March 7, 2012, he knowingly possessed a false Social Security card and a false alien registration card with the intent that they be used to defraud the United States. The indictment also charges him with trafficking in false identification documents between approximately April 2011 until March 7, 2012. If convicted of these charges, he faces up to 15 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.
He is also charged with forcibly assaulting and resisting an HSI special agent while that special agent was engaged in the performance of official duties. Velazquez-Jacobo inflicted bodily injury upon the special agent. This charge stems from an incident that took place during his arrest in which he bit a special agent's finger. If convicted of this charge, he faces up to 20 years in federal prison.
"This case highlights our commitment to protecting both the integrity of our immigration system and our national security," said Nick DiNicola, assistant special agent in charge of HSI Albany. "Immigration benefit fraud schemes undermine the integrity of our nation's legal immigration system, pose a security vulnerability and potentially rob deserving immigrants of benefits they rightfully deserve. HSI will not allow the exploitation for profit of our proud legal immigration tradition and will move aggressively against those who engage in such criminal conduct."
HSI places a high priority on investigating document and benefit fraud. These types of fraud pose a severe threat to national security and public safety because they create a vulnerability that may enable terrorists, criminals and illegal aliens to gain entry to and remain in the United States. Document and benefit fraud are elements of many immigration-related crimes, such as human smuggling and trafficking, critical infrastructure protection, worksite enforcement, visa compliance enforcement and national security investigations. Document fraud, also known as identity fraud, is the manufacturing, counterfeiting, alteration, sale, and/or use of identity documents and other fraudulent documents to circumvent immigration laws or for other criminal activity. Identity fraud in some cases also involves identity theft, a crime in which an imposter takes on the identity of a real person (living or deceased) for some illegal purpose.
The public can report cases of document fraud by calling 1-866-DHS-2-ICE or visiting www.ICE.gov/tips.
This case is being investigated by HSI Syracuse. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Carl Eurenius, Northern District of New York.