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Professional Responsibility

North Carolina man pleads guilty to impersonation

Raleigh, N.C. – A North Carolina man pleaded guilty Monday to impersonating a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officer, following an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Tommie Rand Pierce, 68, is accused of impersonating an ICE officer in order to extract payments from immigration applicants seeking permission to remain in the United States. He is also accused of fraud in connection with hundreds of fraudulent immigration applications.

"ICE HSI takes seriously anyone who impersonates a federal official. These individuals undermine public trust. We must prosecute accordingly in order to protect our citizens," said Brock Nicholson, special agent in charge of ICE HSI in Georgia and the Carolinas.

According to the criminal complaint, Pierce defrauded an unknown number of aliens and/or businesses by leading them to believe he was an ICE officer with the appropriate authority to obtain approval of immigration applications for individuals who were ineligible to obtain benefits. In exchange for monetary payments, Pierce prepared and/or filed fraudulent immigration applications on behalf of illegal aliens. To date, the investigation has revealed more than 265 fraudulent immigration applications filed by Pierce and/or his assistants.