OIG: Office of Inspector General
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Investigative Reports

August 4, 2004

U.S. Department of Justice

Office of the United States Attorney
District of Arizona

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Telephone: (602) 514-7625
Cell: (602) 525-2681

Illegal Immigrant Charged in $47,770 Student Loan Fraud

PHOENIX - The U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Arizona announced that on August 4, 2004, a federal grand jury at Phoenix, returned a three count indictment against JESUS JOSE SERRANO-GIL, DOB 3-7-76, of Glendale, Arizona.

The indictment alleges that SERRANO-GIL falsely claimed to be a United States Citizen, and by so doing obtained Federal Student Aid. The defendant is currently in custody on these charges. He was arrested on a complaint on July 20, 2004.

According to the complaint, only U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents are eligible for Federal Student Aid, such as Stafford Loans and Pell Grants. The complaint alleges that SERRANQ-GIL presented Arizona State University with a birth certificate showing he was born in Maricopa County, Arizona. and was able to obtain approximately $47.770 in Federal Student Aid between 1997 and December of 2000, by falsely claiming to be a U.S. citizen. The complaint alleges the birth certificate was counterfeit, and SERRANO-GIL was a citizen of Mexico.

The federal indictment charges SERRANQ-GIL with violating Title 20 of the United States Code, Section 1097(a), Student Aid Fraud; Title 18 of the United States Code, Section 641, Theft of Government Property; Title 18 of the United States Code. Section 911, False Claim to Citizenship

A conviction for Student Loan Fraud carries a maximum penalty of 5 year(s), a $250,000 fine or both; Theft of Government property carries a maximum penalty of 10year(s), a $250,000 fine or both; False Claim to Citizenship a maximum penalty of 3 year(s}, a $250,000 fine or both

An indictment is simply the method by which a person is charged with criminal activity and raises no inference of guilt. An individual is presumed innocent until competent evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

The investigation preceding the indictment was conducted by the U.S. Department of Education-Office of Inspector General and the U.S. Border Patrol.

The prosecution is being handled by Daniel R. Drake, Assistant U.S. Attorney. District of Arizona, Phoeni.

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Last Modified: 02/28/2005