SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico –U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) San Juan Office of Field Operations officers arrested Friday a citizen of the Ivory Coast who attempted to enter through the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport using a fraudulent visa.
Konan Patrick Assouan appeared Friday afternoon before US Magistrate Judge Camille Velez-Rive for charges in violation of Title 18 USC 1546(a), fraudulent use of visas and other documents.
“CBP officers seek to detect and apprehend persons who try to use fraudulent documents to elude detection and break our laws,” stated Marcelino Borges, Director of Field Operations for Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.
Mr. Assouan arrived at the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport from Anguila, and presented for inspection a passport from the Ivory Coast with a non-immigrant U.S. visa.
The passenger was escorted to secondary inspection, where examination of the documents revealed that that the non-immigrant visa was counterfeit
Mr. Assouan admitted that he purchased the visa for approximately $8,000 in order to travel and seek employment in the United States
CBP field operations officers presented the case to Assistant US Attorney Elba Gorbea who accepted the case for prosecution.
If convicted, Mr. Assouan could be fined, imprisoned not more than 10 years or both.
All defendants are presumed innocent until found guilty in 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.