San Juan, P.R. - A federal grand jury issued an indictment today against Froilan Nolberto Herrera-Torres, a citizen national of the Dominican Republic, after U.S. Customs and Border Protection arrested him last week for assuming the identity of a U.S. citizen.
Herrera-Torres made an initial appearance last Friday before U.S. District Magistrate Judge Camille Velez-Rive, presenting a criminal complaint against him for alleged felony violations under Title 18, United States Code; Section 911; false impersonation of a U.S. citizen, and Title 18, United States Code; Section 1524; false statement in application and use of a U.S. passport.
Herrera-Torres arrived on board a Jet Blue Airways flight at the Luis Munoz Marin International Airport from the Dominican Republic, presenting himself to a CBP officer for admission as a returning U.S. citizen.
The defendant presented a U.S. Passport under the name of Carlos Rafael Rosado.
Officers asked for additional identification, to which the defendant provided a Massachusetts ID card and a Puerto Rico birth certificate.
Noting inconsistencies in the defendant's answers, a CBP officer referred Herrera-Torres to secondary inspection.
During the secondary interview, Herrera-Torres admitted his true and correct name and that he was a national and citizen of the Dominican Republic.
The defendant indicated that he obtained by fraud the U.S. passport he presented.
His fingerprints were queried revealing prior immigration encounters under the names of Jose Luis Herrera Torres and Carlo R. Rosado Martinez.
CBP enforcement officers presented the case for prosecution to the immigration unit of the U.S. Attorney's office in San Juan.
The use of fraudulent documents is the modus operandi used by some individuals to achieve mobility and elude detection by law enforcement.
For law enforcement it is critical to detect and identify individuals who attempt to deceive authorities with the use of fraudulent documents and who in most instances impersonating another individual or stealing someone's identity.
"Every day, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers are vigilant seeking individuals who are in possession of fraudulent or invalid documents, through continuous training in document examination and interviewing techniques," stated Marcelino Borges, director of field operations for CBP in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Evelyn Canals is in charge of the prosecution of this case.
If convicted, Herrera-Torres faces a fine or a sentence of not more than 10 years or both.
All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty by a court of law.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.