LAWFUEL – R. Alexander Acosta, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Michael K. Fithen, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Secret Service, Miami Field Office, announce that defendant Juan Vergara was sentenced on February 28, 2008 to thirty months in a federal prison and was ordered to perform seventy-five hours of community service. His sentenced followed his December 2007 guilty plea to all charges in the indictment, including the sale and attempted sale of counterfeit currency, possession of counterfeit currency, possession of counterfeiting equipment, and possession of counterfeit deterrents.
Vergara was arrested in September 2007 by U.S. Secret Service agents from the Counterfeit Squad and International Squad, after a detailed investigation into Vergara’s counterfeiting operation. During the investigation, Vergara was recorded on audio and video surveillance tapes selling, and attempting to sell, thousands of dollars in counterfeit U.S. currency.
Agents subsequently searched Vergara’s self-storage unit in Medley, Florida, and seized a large-scale sophisticated offset counterfeit plant. Among the items seized were a fully operational printing press, digital scales, multiple offset printing plates, photographic positives and negatives bearing images of various Federal Reserve Notes, silkscreen frames containing watermark and security thread images, and numerous sheets and individual bills of counterfeit U.S. currency in various stages of completion.
Mr. Acosta commended the investigative efforts of United States Secret Service in this investigation. This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Sean T. McLaughlin.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.