Man used ex-co-worker's name on passport

Dec. 28, 2012 at 1:24 PM

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla., Dec. 28 (UPI) -- Authorities in Florida said a Haitian man allegedly used a former co-worker's identity to obtain a U.S. passport he used for six years.

The criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in West Palm Beach, Fla., states that when Todd Terrell Blanding applied for a passport in June officials discovered a passport had been issued in his name six years earlier, the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported Friday.

Agents with the U.S. State Department's Diplomatic Security Service interviewed Blanding three days later and showed him a picture of the man who obtained a passport in his name. He recognized the man as "Jean Joseph," a man from Haiti he had worked with several years earlier.

Agents said they identified "Jean Joseph" as Wilde Jean-Louis and discovered he had "repeatedly" traveled between the United States and Haiti using the passport he obtained in Blanding's name. Jean-Louis isn't a U.S. citizen, investigators said.

Jean-Louis was arrested Dec. 6 on federal charges including identity theft, aggravated identity theft, falsely claiming to be a U.S. citizen and making a false statement on a passport application. He filed an unopposed motion Thursday to continue his arraignment to Jan. 31.

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