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Chicago-area man indicted on charges of smuggling, transporting and harboring illegal aliens


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4/18/2019

Chicago-area man indicted on charges of smuggling, transporting and harboring illegal aliens
 

ROCKFORD, Ill. — An Illinois man was indicted Tuesday by a federal grand jury on several counts of illegally bringing aliens to the U.S., transporting them and harboring them for his personal financial gain.

This indictment was announced by U.S. Attorney John R. Lausch Jr., Northern District of Illinois, and Special Agent in Charge James M. Gibbons, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). The DeKalb (Illinois) Police Department assisted in this investigation.

Luis Alfredo Delacruz, 49, from DeKalb, Illinois, was indicted on the following charges:  

  • two counts of bringing aliens into the United States at a place other than a designated port of entry for commercial advantage or private financial gain;
  • two counts of bringing aliens into the U.S. at a place other than a designated port of entry;
  • two counts of transporting illegal aliens within the U.S. for commercial advantage or private financial gain; and,
  • eight counts of harboring illegal aliens for commercial advantage or private financial gain.



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As alleged in the indictment, in November 2015 and April 2016, Delacruz brought into the United States two aliens who had not received prior official authorization to enter. Delacruz did not bring them through immigration at a designated port of entry, the indictment states.

It is further alleged that on June 1, 2018, Delacruz illegally harbored eight illegal aliens in buildings or other places through employment at Alfredo’s Iron Works in Cortland. Delacruz allegedly harbored these aliens for commercial advantage and his own financial gain.

Each count of bringing aliens into the United States at a place other than a designated port of entry for commercial advantage or private financial gain carries a mandatory minimum sentence of three years in prison and a maximum of 10 years.



    
   
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Each count of bringing aliens to the U.S. at a place other than a designated port of entry carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.

Each count of transporting illegal aliens within the U.S. for commercial advantage or private financial gain, and each count of harboring illegal aliens for commercial advantage or private financial gain, carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

Each count in the indictment also carries a maximum fine of $250,000, and a period of supervised release following imprisonment of up to three years.

If convicted, the Court must impose a reasonable sentence under federal sentencing statutes and the advisory U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.




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The public is reminded that an indictment contains only charges and is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Delacruz is scheduled to appear for arraignment on April 23 before U.S. Magistrate Judge Iain D. Johnston in Rockford, Illinois.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph C. Pedersen, Northern District of Illinois, prosecuted this case.






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Department of Justice
Office of Public Affairs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Florida Man Sentenced to Prison for Filing False Tax Returns

A Port St. Lucie, Florida, man was sentenced to 84 months in prison today for filing false tax returns on behalf of his clients and for failing to report his true income on his own income tax returns, announced Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and U.S. Attorney Ariana Fajardo Orshan for the Southern District of Florida.

According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, from 2012 through 2015, Richard Maurival prepared income tax returns for clients that claimed false education credits, business expenses, and other deductions in order to inflate by thousands of dollars tax refunds issued by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). In addition to filing fraudulent income tax returns for his clients, Maurival falsified his own returns, underreporting the fees he earned in his tax preparation business for tax years 2012, 2013, and 2014.

In addition to the term of imprisonment, U.S. District Judge James Ivan Cohn for the Southern District of Florida ordered Maurival to serve one year of supervised release and pay $267,995 in restitution to the IRS. 

Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Zuckerman and U.S. Attorney Fajardo Orshan commended special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation, who investigated the case, and Tax Division Trial Attorney Grace Albinson and Assistant U.S. Attorney Diana Acosta, who prosecuted the case.






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Department of Justice
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Former Manager for International Airline Pleads Guilty to Acting as an Agent of the Chinese Government

Defendant Placed Packages on Flights from JFK Airport to Beijing at the Direction of Military Officers Assigned to the Chinese Mission to the United Nations

Earlier today, in federal court in Brooklyn, New York, Ying Lin pleaded guilty to acting as an agent of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), without notification to the Attorney General, by working at the direction and control of military officers assigned to the Permanent Mission of the People’s Republic of China to the United Nations.  Lin, a former manager with an international air carrier headquartered in the PRC (the Air Carrier), abused her privileges to transport packages from John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK Airport) to the PRC aboard Air Carrier flights at the behest of the PRC military officers and in violation of Transportation Security Administration (TSA) regulations.  The proceeding was held before United States District Judge Ann M. Donnelly.

Assistant Attorney General for National Security John C. Demers, U.S. Attorney Richard P. Donoghue for the Eastern District of New York, Assistant Director in Charge William F. Sweeney, Jr of the FBI’s New York Field Office, and Special Agent in Charge Angel M. Melendez, Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) announced the guilty plea.



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“This case is a stark example of the Chinese government using the employees of Chinese companies doing business here to engage in illegal activity,” said Assistant Attorney General Demers.  “Covertly doing the Chinese military’s bidding on U.S. soil is a crime, and Lin and the Chinese military took advantage of a commercial enterprise to evade legitimate U.S. government oversight.”

“The defendant’s actions as an agent of the Chinese government helped Chinese military officers to evade U.S. law enforcement scrutiny of packages that they sent from New York to Beijing,” stated United States Attorney Donoghue.  “This case demonstrates how seriously we address counterintelligence threats posed by individuals in the United States who work for foreign governments, such as China.” 

“The FBI and our law enforcement partners do all we can every day to protect this country from the threats we can see, and we work even harder to find the threats we can’t see,” said FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Sweeney.  “Ms. Lin was secreting packages through some of the country's busiest airports, using her work with the Chinese government to thwart our security measures.  We believe this case isn’t unique and hope it serves as an example that the Chinese and other foreign governments can't break our laws with impunity.”

“Lin’s criminal actions exploited the international boundary of the United States as she used her position to smuggle packages onto planes headed to China,” said HSI Special Agent-in-Charge Melendez. “We are committed to ensuring the integrity of our international airports so they are not used as a front for illicit activities.”

Lin worked for the Air Carrier from 2002 through the fall of 2015 as a counter agent at JFK Airport and from the fall of 2015 through April 2016 as the station manager at Newark Liberty International Airport.  During her employment with the Air Carrier, Lin accepted packages from the PRC military officers, and placed those packages aboard Air Carrier flights to the PRC as unaccompanied luggage or checked in the packages under the names of other passengers flying on those flights.  As the PRC military officers did not travel on those flights, Lin’s actions were contrary to a security program that required that checked baggage be accepted only from ticketed passengers, thereby violating TSA regulations.  In addition, Lin encouraged other Air Carrier employees to assist the PRC military officers, instructing those employees that because the Air Carrier was a PRC company, their primary loyalty should be to the PRC.

In exchange for her work at the direction and under the control of PRC military officers and other PRC government officials, Lin received benefits from the PRC Mission and PRC Consulate in New York.  These benefits included tax-exempt purchases of liquor, cigarettes and electronic devices worth tens of thousands of dollars.  These benefits also included free contracting work at the defendant’s two residences in Queens, New York, by PRC construction workers who were permitted under the terms of their visas to work only on PRC government facilities.

When sentenced, Lin faces up to 10 years’ imprisonment.  As part of the guilty plea, Lin agreed to forfeit approximately $25,000 as well as an additional $145,000 in connection with her resolution of the government’s forfeiture verdict in United States v. Zhong, No. 16-CR-614 (AMD).

Mr. Demers and Mr. Donoghue expressed their appreciation to the Transportation Security Administration for their assistance on the case.  The government’s case is being handled by the National Security and Cybercrime Section.  Assistant United States Attorneys Douglas M. Pravda, Alexander A. Solomon, Ian C. Richardson and Sarah M. Evans are in charge of the prosecution, with assistance from Trial Attorney Matthew R. Walczewski of the Department of Justice’s Counterintelligence and Export Control Section.  The forfeiture aspect of the case is being handled by EDNY Assistant United States Attorney Brian Morris of the Office’s Civil Division.












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