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May 9, 2002

INS Agents Arrest Individuals For Manufacture and Sale Of Counterfeit Identification Documents

Arlington, VA………Immigration agents arrested 24 persons and seized counterfeit documents and counterfeiting equipment yesterday in an operation designed to disrupt the continuing false document open-air markets in the Adams-Morgan neighborhood of Washington, D.C.

The operation, called “Card Shark”, was conducted by the Washington District Office of the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), in coordination with the United States Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia and law enforcement from the Metropolitan Police Department, (MPD), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Washington Field Office and the INS Baltimore District Office.

"This is an ongoing investigation and more arrests are expected", said Warren A. Lewis District Director for the Washington District Office of the INS. "We are aggressively working to locate, arrest and prosecute anyone who violates our laws relating to the possession, manufacture, or sale of counterfeit immigration documents."

“Immigration enforcement is a major component in the ongoing effort to tighten our borders and increase homeland security,” said Roscoe C. Howard, Jr., U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia. “We are pleased to support the INS in its effort to ensure that persons are issued valid identification documents. In that regard, we will aggressively prosecute those who manufacture, distribute and possess illegal ones”.

The men were arrested yesterday following the execution of four search warrants at 2801 15th Street NW Washington, D.C. Subsequent to the search, INS agents also seized 360 fake alien registration cards (“green cards”), 281 fraudulent social security cards, 70 bogus employment authorization cards, 46 counterfeit drivers licenses from California, Utah and Florida, and other equipment believed used in the production of the fraudulent documents.

Seven of the arrested individuals are being arraigned on felony charges. Of the seven, four are related to the manufacture and distribution of counterfeit documents, and three are being charged criminally with felony re-entry after deportation. The remaining 17 arrests were for administrative immigration charges

A conviction for fraudulent immigration documents, (18 USC 1546), is punishable by up to ten years in prison or $250,000 fine, or both.


Last Modified 05/09/2002

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