San Juan, P.R. - U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport on June 21 arrested a citizen of the Dominican Republic in possession of a stolen U.S. visa contained in a fraudulent Dominican Republic passport.
Mirian Santos-Rosario, a citizen of the Dominican Republic, was arrested by CBP in possession of fraudulent documents.
Bound to New York on board a Jet Blue Airlines flight originating from San Juan, Santos-Rosario presented a CBP Officer with two passports from the Dominican Republic, a U.S. Visa and an I-94 departure form as proof of legal presence in the United States.
During secondary inspection, a database query by CBP officers revealed Santos-Rosario did not have any immigration records and that the visa had been reported stolen in 2011. Closer examination of the passports revealed that they were in fact fraudulent.
CBP Enforcement Officers presented the case and was accepted by the Special Assistant United States Attorney Kelley Tiffany for criminal prosecution.
Santos-Rosario will appear before a U.S. District Court judge, facing charges of violation of Title 18 United States Code, Section 1543, and fraudulent use of a passport. If convicted Santos-Rosario faces a fine, not more than 10 years of imprisonment, or both. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
"U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers remain vigilant as they review entry documents to identify and apprehend those who use fraudulent or invalid documents in an attempt to enter the U.S.," said Marcelino Borges, director of Field Operations for Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. "CBP officers train regularly to become experts in document examination and interviewing techniques."
CBP Field Operations is responsible for securing our borders at the ports of entry. The CBP officer's primary mission is anti-terrorism. Everyday they screen all people, vehicles, and goods entering the United States, while facilitating the flow of legitimate trade and travel into and out of the United States. Their mission also includes carrying out traditional border-related responsibilities, including narcotics interdiction, enforcing trade laws, enforcing immigration laws, protecting the nation's food supply and protecting U.S. agriculture industry from pests and diseases.
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 official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.