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Mexican man working in Iowa sent to prison for lying about being American citizen

CEDAR RAPIDS – A man who used a false identification document and someone else’s social security number was sentenced to eight months in federal prison.

Juan Perez-Astello, age 45, a citizen of Mexico illegally present in the United States and residing in Postville, Iowa, received the prison term after an April 21, 2022 guilty plea to one count of unlawful use of an identification document.

In a plea agreement, Perez-Astello admitted he used a fraudulent Social Security card bearing someone else’s name and Social Security number when he completed employment and tax forms in November 2020 at a business in Lime Springs, Iowa. On the employment application, Perez-Astello falsely claimed to be a United States citizen. However, Perez-Astello had been deported to Mexico in January 1999, November 2002, and August 2014 and illegally reentered the United States without the permission of the United States government after each removal. Perez-Astello was convicted in the Northern District of Iowa in May 2014 of illegal reentry into the United States after deportation and sentenced to six months’ imprisonment. Perez-Astello was also convicted in the Iowa District Court for Allamakee County in December 1998 of possession of a fraudulent Permanent Resident card, also known as a “green card,” and a fraudulent Social Security card immediately prior to his first deportation.

Perez-Astello was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Judge C.J. Williams. Perez-Astello was sentenced to eight months’ imprisonment. He must also serve a three-year term of supervised release after the prison term. There is no parole in the federal system.

Perez-Astello is being held in the United States Marshal’s custody until he can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Daniel C. Tvedt and investigated by Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Enforcement and Removal Operations.

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