Wednesday, January 23News That Matters

ICE attorney charged after stealing immigrants' identities to defraud credit card companies

When Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re arresting parents, nurses, and teachers. They’re tearing American families apart. They’re stealing immigrants’ identities to commit fraud. And some, I assume, are good people:

The chief counsel for the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement Seattle field office was charged with stealing the identities of seven people who were involved in immigration proceedings, according to court documents.

Raphael A. Sanchez allegedly devised a plan to defraud several financial institutions by using their identities to obtain money and property over a four-year period between October 2013 to October 2017, according to the court documents filed Monday in the US District Court for the Western District of Washington.

He allegedly used “personally identifying information of seven aliens in various stages of immigration proceedings… to obtain money and property by means of materially false and fraudulent pretenses,” according to the document. He allegedly forwarded a copy of a Chinese passport and other personal information of an individual from his ICE email address to a Yahoo account, the document states.

A source familiar with the case told CNN’s Laura Jarrett that Sanchez is no longer with the agency … Sanchez will make his initial court appearance in US District Court in Seattle.

“Sanchez faces one count of wire fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft,” according to CNN. Last month, a federal judge ordered the release of detained immigrant rights leader Ravi Ragbir, who was swept up during an ICE meeting, in what many advocates feel was a politically motivated arrest due to his work in the sanctuary movement. ICE officials justified deporting him after nearly three decades here due to a 2001 conviction. It was for wire fraud.