Transgender woman arrested at courthouse sentenced for money order scheme
EL PASO, Texas (CBS4) —
The transgender woman detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement at the El Paso County Courthouse was sentenced to nine years in prison for her involvement in a fraud scheme.
Irvin Gonzalez was detained at the courthouse in February. Gonzalez was in the country illegally and was taken into custody she received a protective order from her boyfriend.
Gonzalez was detained Feb. 9, and surveillance cameras showed two federal agents escorting her out of the building and into federal custody, which caused many advocates to question the location of the arrest.
It was later discovered that Gonzalez was involved in a money order scheme.
According to information from El Paso police and the U.S. Postal Inspector’s Office, Gonzalez was working with Mario De Avila to steal mail from blue U.S. Post Office drop-off boxes.
The two were accused of stealing money orders, washing them with transmission fluid to remove the recipient’s name, and adding De Avila’s name.
In a 231-page forgery indictment, Gonzalez was charged with more than 200 counts of fraud for the money order scheme.
In March, Gonzalez pleaded guilty to illegal re-entry.
On Thursday, Gonzalez was sentenced to nine years for theft of property and nine years for fraud. The sentence will run concurrently.
As part of the plea agreement, the additional 243 counts of forgery were dismissed.