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Seventeen San Francisco Bay Area Residents Charged With False Passport Or Entry Visa Offenses


Press Statement
San Francisco, CA
October 29, 2009

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U.S. Department of Justice,
Joseph P. Russoniello, United States Attorney
Northern District of California

Seventeen San Francisco Bay Area residents were charged with federal passport or entry visa offenses between April and September, United States Attorney Joseph P. Russoniello and Diplomatic Security Service Special Agent in Charge Patrick Durkin announced.

According to court records and proceedings, the following defendants made misrepresentations of their identity on applications for United States passports, altered their own authentic passports, or submitted counterfeit documents when they applied for an entry visa:

  • Jose Aguilar, Jr. of San Jose, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a passport belonging to another person. Aguilar was arrested by DSS Special Agents on April 10. His case is in progress.
  • Wandell Santana of San Bruno, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Santana was arrested by DSS Special Agents on April 23. He has since been placed in fugitive status.
  • Randall Fletcher formerly of Castro Valley, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Fletcher was arrested by DSS Special Agents on April 23. His case is in progress.
  • Antonio Ferreira formerly of Albany, Calif., was convicted of possessing another person’s birth certificate when he applied for a passport. Ferreira was arrested by DSS Special Agents in Miami. He was sentenced to two years probation on May 1.
  • Christina Chavez of Walnut Creek, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Chavez self-surrendered to DSS Special Agents and entered a pre-trial diversion program with the federal courts on Aug. 20.
  • James Allen Jordan of Santa Clara County, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Jordan was charged on May 28, and is in the process of being transferred from the Santa Clara County Sheriff to federal court, where his case is in progress.
  • Amir Rashidifar of San Jose, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a passport using a counterfeit birth certificate. Rashidifar was arrested by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Toronto on July 10, and was returned to San Jose federal court. The defendant entered a guilty plea on Oct. 27 to one count of false statement under 18 USC § 1001. He is currently detained awaiting sentencing, which is scheduled for Nov. 23.
  • Luis Angon of Eureka, Calif., is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Angon eluded arrest on June 14 and remains a DSS fugitive.
  • Bruce Lee Marshall, formerly of the Bay Area, was convicted of altering his authentic United States passport to reflect a different name. Marshall was arrested by DSS Special Agents on March 13. He was sentenced to nine months imprisonment and a $5,000 fine on August 27.
  • Sudheer Kassireddy of Fremont, Calif., was convicted of possessing a high technology worker visa he obtained through fraud. Kassireddy was arrested by DSS Special Agents on June 29 and was sentenced to two years probation on May 1.
  • Jason William Dickerson, last known address of Iowa, is alleged to have applied for a passport using another person’s birth certificate. Dickerson eluded arrest and remains a DSS fugitive.
  • Luis Montero of Hollister, Calif., was convicted of possessing a false birth certificate when he applied for a passport. Montero self-surrendered to DSS Special Agents on July 16. He was sentenced to one year of probation on July 28.
  • Yolanda Nieto Magana of Gilroy, Calif., was convicted of possessing another person’s birth certificate when she applied for a passport. Magana self-surrendered to DSS Special Agents on July 16. She was sentenced to one year of probation on July 30.
  • Claudia Baron-Lopez of Watsonville, Calif., was convicted of possessing another person’s birth certificate when she applied for a passport. Baron-Lopez self-surrendered to DSS Special Agents on July 30 and was sentenced to one year of probation on Aug. 10.
  • Javier Miron Marquez of San Jose, Calif., was convicted of possessing another person’s birth certificate when he applied for a passport. Marquez self-surrendered to DSS Special Agents on July 16 and was sentenced to one year of probation on Sept. 2.
  • Maria Trujillo-Guillen of Salinas, Calif., was convicted of possessing another person’s birth certificate when she applied for a passport. Trujillo-Guillen self-surrendered to DSS Special Agents on July 16 and was sentenced to one year of probation on Sept. 3.
  • Francisco Ruiz of Milpitas, Calif., was convicted of possessing another person’s birth certificate when he applied for a passport. Ruiz self-surrendered to DSS Special Agents on July 30 and was sentenced to one year of probation on Sept. 24.

Each of the individuals was charged with violating 18 U.S.C. § 1542, False Statement in Application for a Passport or 18 U.S.C. § 1028, Fraud in Connection with Identification Documents. The maximum statutory penalties for these offenses ranges from one to 10 years of imprisonment, although any sentence following conviction was or would be imposed by the court after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.

The charges are part of the zero-tolerance policy towards imposters who try to obtain or use authentic American passports and entry visas. More than 175 Bay Area residents have been similarly prosecuted since 2007.

Wendy Thomas, Eumi Choi, Wade Rhyne, Grant Fondo, Kevin Barry, Jeffrey Schenk, and Acadia Senese are the Assistant U.S. Attorneys who are prosecuting the cases; with the assistance of Legal Assistants Jeanne Carstensen, Rawaty Yim, Marina Ponomarchuk and Alfonso Martinez. The prosecutions are the result of ongoing investigations by the United States State Department’s Diplomatic Security Service.

Anyone with information about false or fraudulently issued passports or visas, or the whereabouts of the above fugitives, is encouraged to contact DSS at (415) 705-1176.

Please note: These charges contain only allegations against an individual and the defendants must be presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

A copy of this press release may be found on the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Web site at www.usdoj.gov/usao/can.
Electronic court filings and further procedural and docket information are available at https://ecf.cand.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin/login.pl.

Judges’ calendars with schedules for upcoming court hearings can be viewed on the court’s Web site at www.cand.uscourts.gov.

CONTACT:
Jack Gillund
415-436-6599
Jack.Gillund@usdoj.gov



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