Fake Proof


In the State of Florida, only U.S. citizens, legal permanent residents and other authorized foreign nationals are allowed to obtain Florida driver’s licenses. For a foreign national, proof of residence can be confirmed with a permanent residence stamp on his or her passport – unless it is a fake. The Miami Herald follows a story about a Venezuelan man who was in the business of selling bogus immigration stamps for thousands of dollars to undocumented immigrants for the purpose of obtaining Florida driver’s licenses.

The article states that over two-and-a-half years, the man and two alleged accomplices sold the fake U.S. residence stamps to at least 110 people. Court records estimate his ”take” from the fraudulent venture at approximately $250,000. Investigators interviewed nearly half of the undocumented immigrants who bought the fake stamps. And, after an undercover interview with an investigator who was posing as an undocumented immigrant, the man incriminated himself while explaining how the exchange would occur.

This offense may not have been the first for the foreigner as he was also being investigated for lying on an application for a concealed weapons permit. According to court records, he fled the U.S. days after being investigated by federal agents and re-entered the U.S. illegally through Mexico several years later.

The man pleaded guilty to being the leader of the scam and selling fake U.S. residence stamps to undocumented immigrants. He was sentenced to nearly four years in prison, plus one year of supervised release. The defendant’s attorney stated that the criminal got a lighter sentence due to his cooperation with the government. (Really? He is jeopardizing the security of every U.S. citizen, and we cut him some slack?)

Today’s Fraud of the Day criminal has broken quite a few laws for: 1) being in the U.S. illegally, not once, but potentially twice 2) selling fraudulent residency stamps 3) aiding and abetting undocumented immigrants, and 4) possibly attempting to obtain a concealed weapons permit. The sentence he received seems a bit light, but the order for deportation following the completion of his prison term proves that our justice system will punish those involved in this type of crime.

Source: Today’s ”Fraud of the Day” is based on an article titled, ”Venezuelan Man Sentenced in Immigration Scam,” written by Alfonso Chardy and published by the Miami Herald on December 31, 2013.

MIAMI – U.S. District Judge Cecilia Altonaga has sentenced a Venezuelan man to 45 months in prison and one year supervised release after he pleaded guilty to leading a ring that sold fake U.S. residence stamps to undocumented immigrants so they could obtain Florida driver’s licenses.

Isaac de Jesus Carrasco, along with two alleged accomplices, sold the fake stamps to at least 110 people over more than 2 ½ years, earning more than $250,000, according to federal court records.

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Larry Benson, Senior Director of Strategic Alliances, LexisNexis Risk Solutions - Government

Larry Benson is responsible for developing strategic partnerships and solutions for the government vertical. His expertise focuses on how government programs are defrauded by criminal groups, and the approaches necessary to prevent them from succeeding.

Mr. Benson has 30 years of experience in sales and business development. Before joining LexisNexis® Risk Solutions, he spent 12 years founding and managing two software technology startups. During the 1990s he spent 10 years as a Regional Director helping to grow a New England-based technology company from 300 employees to 7,000. He started his career with Martin Marietta Aerospace working on laser guided weapons and day/night vision systems.

A sought-after speaker and accomplished writer, Mr. Benson is the principal author of “Fraud of the Day,” a website dedicated to educating government officials about how criminals are defrauding government programs. He has co-authored WTF? Where’s the Fraud? How to Unmask and Stop Identity Fraud’s Drain on Our Government, and Data Personified, How Fraud is Changing the Meaning of Identity.

Benson holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Albright College, and earned two graduate degrees – a Master of Business Administration from Florida Institute of Technology, and a Master of Science in Engineering from Lehigh University.