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South West Idaho woman pleads guilty in immigration scam
BOISE, Idaho (AP) _ A southwestern Idaho woman has pleaded guilty to a scam that targeted immigrants seeking U.S. citizenship.
Crystal Tijerina, of Caldwell, faces up to 25 years in prison at her Oct. 12 sentencing in U.S. District Court in Boise. The 29-year-old pleaded guilty Wednesday to charges of mail fraud and misuse of U.S. government seals as part of an agreement with federal prosecutors.
The U.S. Attorney's Office say Tijerina offered assistance in filing immigration paperwork while operating the business, Soluciones Economicas, in a scheme that started in June 2009 and lasted nearly a year. Authorities say she took money from immigrants and gave them fraudulent documents with U.S. government seals.
Tijerina agreed to pay more than $17,000 in restitution to her victims as part of her plea agreement.