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Final Member Of South Sacramento Document Fraud Ring Sentenced

U.S. Department of Justice
Sacramento, CA
May 31, 2007

McGregor W. Scott
United States Attorney
Eastern District of California

At a news conference at the Robert Matsui Federal Courthouse in Sacramento, United States Attorney McGregor W. Scott; Patrick Durkin, Special Agent in Charge of the San Francisco Field Office of the United States State Department Diplomatic Security Service; and Drew S. Parenti, Special Agent in Charge, Sacramento Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation announced today the sentencing of the last of five defendants who operated a large-scale document fraud ring in Sacramento. Today, United States District Judge Morrison C. England, Jr. sentenced JOANN RAMIREZ, 48, of Sacramento, to a term of imprisonment of 15 months and 36 months of supervised release for conspiracy to commit document fraud and Social Security fraud, sale of citizenship documents, and possession of false identification documents.

The leader of conspiracy, SONNY RUDY MARTINEZ, 31, of Sacramento, was sentenced on March 13, 2007, to a term of imprisonment of 40 months and 36 months of supervised release. Co-defendant JAIME MARTINEZ, 33, of Puebla, Mexico, was sentenced on February 27, 2007, to a term of imprisonment of 18 months and 36 months of supervised release; co-defendant JESSICA MAYORAL, 29, of Sacramento, was sentenced on February 27, 2007, to a term of imprisonment of 15 months and 36 months of supervised release; and co-defendant LORETTA ARRENDONDO, 24, of Sacramento, was sentenced on February 27, 2007, to a termof imprisonment of 15 months and 24 months of supervised release.

This case is the product of a joint investigation by the United States Department of State Diplomatic Security Service, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Sacramento Police Department.

According to Assistant United States Attorney Michael M. Beckwith, who prosecuted the case, RAMIREZ was a member of a ring that sold over 5,000 fraudulent identification documents, mostly to illegal immigrants. The ring sold fraudulent green cards and Social Security cards and, less frequently, valid United States birth certificates. Many of the fraudulent Social Security cards sold by the ring had valid Social Security numbers.

“It is essential to protect the integrity of widely used identification documents such as birth certificates and Social Security cards. The State Department, FBI, and Sacramento Police Department are to be commended for their excellent work breaking up this Sacramento-based fraud ring,” stated United States Attorney Scott.

“Fraudulent documents are potential threats to the national security of the United States. Official U.S. identification documents are some of the most coveted documents in the world. Foreign nationals who have acquired such documents could perpetrate further illegal acts to include terrorism. These fraudulent document crimes make the United States more vulnerable to terrorism, plain and simple,” said Patrick Durkin, Special Agent in Charge of the San Francisco Field Office of the U.S. State Department’s Diplomatic Security Service.

“The success in this investigation illustrates the cooperative efforts of local and federal law enforcement partners to identify and convict those individuals engaged in the creation and sale of fraudulent green cards and Social Security cards,” according to Drew S. Parenti, Special Agent in Charge, Sacramento Divison of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

“These types of crimes are being increasingly perpetrated throughout the United States. Since the involved individuals and purported incidents cross various jurisdictional boundaries, these cases would be extremely difficult to successfully investigate without the joint collaboration and effort of allied agencies. By sharing personnel, expertise, and resources we are better equipped to combat these criminal activities. Since these types of crimes could potentially have a major impact on the security of our citizens and nation, we need to remain diligent and vigilant in pursuing the people who commit them,” stated Sgt. John Castiglia, Sacramento Police Department.

Contact:
L. Kendal Smith
May 25, 2007 (571) 345-2509
SmithLK2@state.gov

Rosemary Shaul 
United States Attorney Eastern District of California
916-554-2202


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