SoCal Man Accused of Posing as ICE Agent to Bilk Latino Immigrants in OC

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SANTA ANA (CNS) - A San Diego man is facing criminal charges for allegedly impersonating a federal agent in order to con tens of thousands of dollars from Orange County immigrants who sought "green cards" and United States citizenship, officials announced Thursday.

Davyd George Brand Jimenez, 52, of San Ysidro, was named in a 25-count indictment returned by a Santa Ana federal grand jury Wednesday. Brand Jimenez is currently being sought by federal authorities, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

The indictment charges Brand Jimenez with 10 counts of false impersonation of a federal officer or employee, three counts of mail fraud, two counts of wire fraud, seven counts of fraudulent possession and use of U.S. government seals, three counts of aggravated identity theft and one count of misusing a United States passport.

According to the DOJ, Brand Jimenez pretended to be a special agent with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to scam victims, primarily targeting undocumented members of the Latino community by telling them he could help with work permits, legal U.S. residency and U.S. citizenship. He allegedly charged each victim between $10,000 and $20,000, prosecutors say.

In addition to falsely claiming to be an ICE federal agent or a federal Homeland Security official, Brand Jimenez allegedly sometimes told victims that he was a "G-18" official, which is a non-existent position.

Brand Jimenez failed to file immigration paperwork for his victims, and he never obtained any immigration benefits for them, according to the indictment. Because he was not providing any immigration benefits for his victims, Brand Jimenez allegedly fabricated immigration documents with the victims' names that fraudulently displaying the emblem of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, court papers state.

Brand Jimenez also allegedly fabricated a stay of deportation order and provided it to one of his victims as alleged proof that the victim would not be deported, which was not true. In another instance, Brand Jimenez allegedly provided a victim with a valid Social Security card, a U.S. passport card and a California Identification Card, and he directed that victim to use those documents under the name of a different person as proof of authorization to reside and work in the United States, according to the DOJ.

Brand Jimenez is considered to be a fugitive after failing to appear for a sentencing hearing after pleading guilty in an unrelated narcotics case in San Diego federal court.

If convicted of all charges, Brand Jimenez would face decades in federal prison, prosecutors noted.

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