Identity Theft Targets Hispanic Community

Jose Marrero, who was born and lived his entire life in Puerto Rico, had no idea that someone else was using his name and Social Security number to charge thousands of dollars in Miami and Chicago. At least, not until the police showed up at his job to arrest him for car theft. Marrero told the Associated Press, “All of the information [on the warrant], all of it, the driver’s license, the Social Security, my address, was mine. I was shocked. I told them simply that it wasn’t me.”

In the U.S., a Puerto Rican’s identity is worth as much as $6,000, since it can be used to hide illegal immigrants. Like most personally identifying documents, Marrero’s were probably stolen from schools or church rectories.

Puerto Rican stolen identities have surfaced in immigration raids all over the country. “Birth certificates have become legal tender,” said Puerto Rico’s secretary of state.…

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