PORTLAND, Maine — A 52-year-old Portland man faces prison time and deportation to his native Antigua for allegedly stealing an Illinois man’s identity and getting $250,000 worth of government benefits reserved for U.S. citizens.
Besouro Abdul Zagon pleaded not guilty Monday in U.S. District Court to 30 charges that include identity theft; theft of federal housing assistance, health benefits and food stamps; and social security, student aid and passport fraud.
According to court documents, Zagon had been using a passport in the name of Earl Benjamin Jr. since 1986. Authorities began investigating Zagon when the real Earl Benjamin applied for a passport and was told that three previous passports had been issued in his name.
Zagon was born Donald Benjamin in Antigua. Officials say he changed his name in 1991 for religious reasons.