Honduran National Sentenced for Illegal Reentry, Social Security Fraud

May 17, 2024

From the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Rhode Island

PROVIDENCE, RI – A Honduran national who reentered the United States illegally after he had been removed from the country on three previous occasions, and who used the Social Security number of another individual to gain employment has been sentenced to 18 months in federal prison, announced United States Attorney Zachary A. Cunha.

Belfran Joel Najera-Chirinos, 42, previously admitted to a federal judge that he was removed from the United States in 2018 and then removed twice more in 2019, but that he nevertheless again reentered the United States illegally prior to being arrested in Providence in January 2023.

At the time of his most recent arrest, Najera-Chirinos was employed by a local shipbuilder, working under the name, and using the Social Security number, of another individual. When arrested, Najera-Chirinos provided law enforcement the name of yet another individual, and produced a Puerto Rican driver’s license in the name of that person.

Najera-Chirinos pleaded guilty on January 31, 2024, to charges of illegal reentry after deportation and Social Security fraud. He was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Mary S. McElroy on May 9, 2024, to 18 months of incarceration to be followed by one year of federal supervised release. Najera-Chirinos faces deportation proceedings upon completion of his current term of incarceration.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Ronald R. Gendron.

The matter was investigated by the Homeland Security Investigations and the Social Security Administration, Office of the Inspector General/Office of Investigations.

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