The agents then met a friend of Cho's named Dong Young "Dereck" Shin, 47, who was in the business of selling Social Security cards, court records say. The cards were issued to Chinese nationals in the Mariana Islands to allow them to work, Ramsey said, but recipients were selling them, sometimes with passports of family information.The syndicate stretched to Chicago where thousands of social security cards starting with the number '586' were were being sold to illegals wishing to get a driver's license. In February 2009, I reported that the Chicago arm of the syndicate was busted in a post entitled, 586: Saipan Connections to Chicago Crime Syndicate.
The Social Security cards were then used in the continental United States to obtain driver's licenses and credit cards. And then mortgages. Special Agent Ashan Benedict said people were able to establish good credit scores by making timely payments for months or years, all under false identities.
The investigation also uncovered a Department of Motor Vehicles employee in Illinois who was knowingly providing fake driver's licenses to people, often from Virginia. Those people would then trade the Illinois license for a legitimate Virginia license.
"Identity fraud really is a national security matter," Benedict said. "They're living here as a normal citizen. Is that the only thing they're going to do? Or are they a sleeper cell, are they up for criminal activity?"
From the 156-page Criminal Complaint filed today in the US District Court of Northern District of Illinois (emphasis added):Further investigation of the social security account cards utilized by this criminal enterprise has revealed that a large portion of the cards were originally obtained, through legal means by Chinese nationals temporarily working in Saipan. Upon the return of these temporary workers to the PRC or while still in Saipan, their issued social security account cards were collected and transported in bulk to the U.S. for eventual use by this criminal enterprise.From the Atlanta Examiner:The identity kits included a counterfeit or genuine but altered Chinese passport, prosecutors said. The passports were matched to legitimate Social Security numbers, many acquired by Chinese nationals working on the Pacific island of Saipan.
A photo of the buyer was inserted in the passport along with one of the legitimate Social Security numbers and bogus proof of residency such as a utility bill, prosecutors said. They were then taken to driver's license facilities.
Individuals with "even minimal counterfeiting capabilities" can obtain genuine U.S. passports, which can be used to travel overseas, open bank accounts and prove U.S. citizenship, the GAO report says.
In the "most egregious" case, it says, the investigator used the Social Security number of a man who died in 1965 to obtain a Social Security card. In another case, he used the Social Security number of a 5-year-old child and obtained a passport, even though his counterfeit documents and application indicated he was 53 years old.
"A U.S. passport is a key to virtually anywhere in the world," said Sen. John Kyl, R-Arizona. "It is very troubling that in the years since the September 11 attacks someone could use fraudulent documents to obtain a U.S. passport."
Kyl and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, both members of the Senate Judiciary Committee's subcommittee on terrorism, requested the test.
The investigator used the counterfeit documents to obtain a genuine Washington, D.C., identification card.
For three of the tests, the undercover investigator submitted passport applications and supporting materials at U.S. Postal Service locations that accept passport applications.
For the remaining test, it submitted the application and materials to the State Department's regional passport office in Washington.
"State and USPS employees did not identify our documents as counterfeit in any of our four tests," the GAO report says. The State Department "issued a genuine U.S. passport in each case."
"All four passports were issued to the same GAO investigator, under four different names," it says. The tests occurred between July and December of last year.
Criminals and terrorists place a high value on illegally obtained travel documents, U.S. intelligence officials have said. Currently, poorly faked passports are sold on the black market for $300, while top-notch fakes go for around $5,000, according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement investigations.Fake Passports Online
Australia's immigration minister, Chris Evans, says an operation across the country's eastern states has uncovered an alleged labour hire racket within the meat industry.Another March 2008 article from the Brisbane Times reported that websites are selling fake passports and driver's licenses for the U.S., Australia, Brazil, Canada, U.K., Belgium, France, Germany and other countries. Buyfakepassports.com claims:
The investigation followed a tip-off about Chinese workers being brought into Australia to work unlawfully in meatworks.
Senator Evans says a case of alleged identity fraud has also been identified which is believed to be widespread, coordinated and targeted the meat industry specifically.
He says the immigration department believes up to 100 illegal workers are involved in the racket.
The suspected ring leader has been identified and a large amount of evidence, including fake passports, has been seized.
Our passports produced with high quality and have no difference from the original documents. We accept all security features like special paper, watermarks, security threads, intaglio printing, microprinting, fluorescent dyes, color-changing ink, document number laser perforation, latent image, laser image perforation while producing passports.The main page states that "your privacy is 100% guaranteed." They have a sample page that shows the different passport from each country, a question and answer page, an order page, a services pages and a news page.
There is also a possibility to affix almost all kind of stamps into the passports. The price for this service should be discussed with our operator and may be variable.
Attention! There is a new option of document duplicates producing, i.e. cloning of the real existing document but with your photo. We select suitable document from our database considering on your age, sex, nationality, ect. This service is available for not all countries, pricing is not fixed too.
The order page lists states how the payment is to be made and details the terms of agreement.
The site asks for 750 euros ($1500) to be sent in installments to Chisinau, Moldova, via money order services, Western Union or money gram.
The anonymous operators of Buyfakepassports told AAP via email that their passports would "successfully pass all existing tests, like UV-test, MRZ (Machine Readable Zone) check, machine check and so on".
"In fact we haven't got any complaints from our customers on the problems with customs, airports or any other law authorities during travelling.
"We also provide [the ability] to affix almost all kind of stamps into the passports to make you feel more confident."
The number of improperly documented arrivals at Australian airports varies year to year.
In 2007-08, Australian officials overseas detected 128 improperly documented arrivals, while 143 were detected at Australia's entry points.
Between 2004 and 2008, Iraq, China and Sri Lanka were the most commonly claimed nationalities.
Passports are connected with the right of some protection abroad by the government of the country of which one is a national, and with the right to enter the country of which one is a national. However, the right of protection does not arise from a passport, nor does the right to enter. Each right arises from nationality. A passport proves the nationality of the bearer, and, consequently, their right of protection and right to enter.Here are the other pages from this site.
In modern times, the passport has become a symbol of national sovereignty and control by each nation-state. That control works both for citizens within a nation and all others outside. All nations thus collude in the system of control of travel rather than its freedom. If freedom of travel is one of the essential marks of the liberated human being, as stated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, then the very acceptance of a national passport is the mark of the slave, serf or subject.
Your personal privacy is your fundamental right, but in today's modern technological world, it is too often compromised. Nobody likes being hassled. An alternate identity might be just the thing to avoid unwelcome attention.
You may have a multitude of additional reasons why your true identity could put you in an undesirable position, particularly if you are high-profile and wealthy. You can never actually know before some nasty streak of events whether you are really in safety or not. Think of all the possibilities inherent in a social and political system based on conformist and permanent state controlled brainwashing. And if that's not enough: how about the IRS or your local equivalent to that agency?
But persevere and you will be well rewarded. Be aware that the storm clouds of future fiscal and personal oppression are already appearing on the political and legal landscapes of many formerly civilized nations. Getting a second passport now might prove to be one of the best insurance policies you ever buy.
Just don't leave it too late. Good luck !
Aren't these types of businesses illegal?