Previously Removed Dominican Republic Man Charged with Illegally Reentering the United States and Possession and Use of Fraudulent Documents

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FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen at the United States Department of Justice headquarters in Washington, D.C.

St. Croix, USVI – Reynaldo Mejia-Mejia, a citizen of the Dominican Republic, was arrested March 23, 2022 on St. Croix and charged by federal complaint with illegally reentering the United States and possession and use of fraudulent documents.

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

During questioning at the primary inspection, Mejia stated he was born in Puerto Rico, however, the CBP officer noticed that Mejia’s accent was that of one distinctive to the Dominican Republic. A subsequent fingerprint check positively identified Mr. Mejia-Mejia, and record checks revealed he was previously deported by Immigration in 2018 and 2019 from the United States to the Dominican Republic. The driver’s license Mejia-Mejia presented was determined to be counterfeit, and Mejia-Mejia admitted that he had purchased it. Further, there are no records of Reynaldo Mejia-Mejia legally entering the United States. Reynaldo Mejia-Mejia did not receive permission from the Attorney General to reapply for admission to the United States at the time of the encounter on March 23, 2022, and Mejia-Mejia is not a citizen or national of the United States. Reynaldo Mejia-Mejia is 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 and CBP are investigating the case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Melissa Ortiz is prosecuting the case. Detention and preliminary hearings are scheduled for Wednesday, March 30, 2022 in U.S. District Court.

U.S. Attorney Gretchen Shappert reminds the public that a criminal complaint is merely an allegation and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.