Monday, June 07, 2004

Daily News Transcript - Brazil Immigrant Arrested for Fraud, ID Theft and Counterfeit Money

Daily News Transcript - Local News Coverage

Immigrant arrested on fraud charges
By Sean Murphy / News Staff Writer
Monday, June 7, 2004

NORWOOD -- A Brazilian man who may have been in the U.S. illegally was arrested by Norwood Police on charges of fraud and possession of counterfeit bills, local and federal officials said.

Paula McCarran, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Postal Inspection Service in Boston, said word first came to the area from customs agents in New York City who had opened a package sent through regular mail from Brazil, bound for Norwood, and found counterfeit money inside.

Norwood Police got involved after postal inspectors in Boston tipped them off that the package was headed to a local resident, according to police spokesman Paul Bishop. Inspectors told police the package contained 11 counterfeit $100 bills.

That led to what police called a "controlled delivery," where the package was delivered to its recipient, Emerson F. DaSilva, 31, at his home at 252 Washington St., Norwood, at around 4 p.m. Thursday.

According to Norwood Police, the package itself was delivered by postal inspectors, not traditional letter carriers, and the delivery was monitored by Norwood Police Detective Sgt. Robert Rinn, Norwood Police Detective David Papargiris and agents from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Secret Service.

When DaSilva signed for the package, police and federal agents confronted him and asked about the package. Police said DaSilva claimed the money was a partial payment from a friend in Brazil for $2,300 DaSilva had loaned.

DaSilva told police he did not speak English well, and came to this country about four years ago on a visitor's visa. According to a police report, DaSilva did not have a passport, but had a false green card and Social Security card, which he had used to get a job as a manager at the local McDonald's restaurant at 1600 Providence Highway in Norwood.

The report said DaSilva told police he had worked at the restaurant, and before that at another McDonald's in Walpole, for the past four years. A supervising manager at the Norwood store declined to comment on the case, or on store policy.

Police arrested DaSilva Thursday on charges of possession of counterfeit bills and identity fraud. He was arraigned Friday morning in Dedham District Court, where bail was set for $20,000. As of Friday afternoon, he had not posted and was still in custody. He is due in court again for a pretrial hearing June 15.

Special Agent Ken Bradshaw, at the Boston office of the U.S. Secret Service, said DaSilva had no known record with his department, and he did not yet know if DaSilva would face federal charges. "The investigation is still ongoing," he said.

McCarran said it is unlikely the postal service will pursue charges.

Bradshaw said seeing this amount of counterfeit cash at one time is not unusual. "This is a small amount," he said.

A spokesman for the U.S. Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement said it was not yet clear whether DaSilva would face deportation.


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