Previously Removed Dominican Republic Man Pleads Guilty to Illegally Re-Entering The USA

Previously Removed Dominican Republic Man Pleads Guilty to Illegally Re-Entering The USA

CHRISTIANSTED — A previously-deported Dominican Republic national who used a fake ID to try to board a flight from St. Croix to Florida has admitted to his guilt in federal court, authorities said.

Reynaldo Mejia-Mejia, of Santo Domingo, pleaded guilty yesterday in U.S. District Court before Magistrate Judge George Cannon, Jr. to illegally reentering the United States, U.S. Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert said.

According to court documents, Reynaldo Mejia-Mejia, 33, presented himself to U.S. Customs
and Border Protection (CBP) officers for inspection to board a Spirit airlines flight from St. Croix to Fort Lauderdale on March 23, 2022. He displayed a Washington State driver’s
license in the name of another individual with a photo of his likeness as proof of identification to

During questioning at the primary inspection, Mejia stated that he was born in Puerto Rico;
however, the CBP officer noticed that Mejia’s accent sounded distinctive to the Dominican
Republic. A subsequent fingerprint check positively identified Mr. Mejia-Mejia, and record
checks revealed that he was previously deported by immigration officials in 2018 and 2019 from
the United States to the Dominican Republic.

CBP officers determined that Mejia-Mejia is not a citizen or national of the United States. Reynaldo Mejia-Mejia is in fact a citizen and national of the Dominican Republic, and he was not in possession of the required legal documents to be present or to enter the United States.

Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) are investigating the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Melissa Ortiz is prosecuting the case.

Mejia-Mejia is scheduled to be sentenced on August 18, 2022, He faces a maximum penalty of two years in prison.

A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.