A press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office:
MEXICAN CITIZEN PLEADS GUILTY TO BANK FRAUD SCHEME
ROCKFORD — A Mexican citizen pled guilty today in federal court before U.S. District Judge Philip G. Reinhard to bank fraud.
JAVIER SANTOS SUAREZ (also known as Roberto Rios, Simon Estrada, Jorge Viveros, Francisco Alvarado, and Fernando Razo), 40, admitted to scheming with co-defendants, from January 2003 through August 2003, to defraud and obtain money using counterfeit checks payable to fictitious names that the defendants cashed in Northern Illinois and other states.
According to the written plea agreement, Suarez and his co-defendants used counterfeit checks that they cashed at banks located near the businesses on which they were purportedly drawn.
The defendants used false personal identification documents such as false Resident Alien Cards when presented to the banks to cash.
Suarez admitted that he kept at least a portion of the cash he received from personally cashing counterfeit checks, and turned the balance of the cash over to other participants.
Suarez and his co-defendants cashed counterfeit checks at banks and businesses located in Poplar Grove, Marengo, and Harvard, Ill., as well as in other states, totaling $721,617.
Suarez was found in Wisconsin when he was arrested on the federal charges.
Suarez faces a maximum sentence of 30 years’ imprisonment, a term of supervised release of up to 5 years following imprisonment, and a fine of up to $1 million, or twice the gross gain or gross loss resulting from that offense, whichever is greater.
The actual sentence will be determined by the United States District Court, guided by the Sentencing Guidelines. Sentencing for Suarez is set for May 13, 2019, at 10:00 a.m.
Also convicted of bank fraud in the case were:
- ROGELIO RAMOS, now 38, who pled guilty on Sept. 15, 2004, and was sentenced on Nov. 19, 2004, to 40 months in federal prison, to be followed by 5 years of supervised release, and was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $773,336.66;
- LEONEL BELLO LEON, now 41, who pled guilty on July 15, 2005, and was sentenced on Sept. 26, 2005, to 31 months in federal prison, to be followed by 5 years supervised release, and was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $718,778.56; and
- MISEAL SANGABRIEL ALARCON, now 38, who pled guilty on Dec. 16, 2005, and was sentenced on March 24, 2005, to 32 months in federal prison, to be followed by 3 years of supervised release, and was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $141,738.50.
The guilty plea was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the
Northern District of Illinois, and Jeffrey Sallet, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of
the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael D. Love.