Berry worker with fake papers sentenced

Posted April 25, 2009, at 2:01 p.m.

BANGOR, Maine — A Mexican national who worked in Maine’s blueberry industry was sentenced to time served Friday in U.S. District Court for possessing false immigration documents.

Jose Erasmo Avelar Menuibar, 23, was one of five Mexican men arrested in December who had submitted false documents when they sought employment with Jasper Wyman & Son, according to court documents.

The men were arrested Dec. 10 after an inspection of the company’s employment records conducted last year by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, according to documents filed in federal court in Bangor.

No charges have been filed against the company.

Menuibar was the second of the five former Wyman workers to be sentenced, according to court records. The others all have pleaded guilty to the same charge — possessing false immigration documents.

Fredi Perez, 23, who was living in Harrington at the time of his arrest, was sentenced earlier this month to time served on a similar charge. Ismael Ramirez de Ochoa, 38, Javier Colegio, 40, and Miguel Sepulveda, 33, are scheduled to be sentenced next month.

All of the men faced up to 10 years each in federal prison and fines of up to $250,000 each. After completing their sentencing, all are expected to be deported to Mexico.

jharrison@bangordailynews.net

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