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HOUSTON - Thirteen individuals were charged by indictment in July for allegedly conspiring to possess or obtain counterfeit identity documents.

The first of the two indictments charges a total of 17 defendants. All 17 are accused of being involved in a conspiracy to solicit customers at the various flea markets in north Houston to purchase counterfeit U.S. permanent resident cards and other identifying documents beginning in or about February 2009 through June 2010. The customers were allegedly photographed and asked to provide other information necessary to complete the counterfeit immigrant and non-immigrant government documents. Once the photograph and information was obtained, the information was communicated via telephone, text messaging or courier to other co-conspirators operating a counterfeit government document production mill which produced the counterfeit documents which were then sold to customers.  A conviction for this conspiracy charge carries a maximum punishment of five years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.


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