U.S. charges Latvian with faking documents

A Latvian man accused of creating and possessing false identification documents—including a nonimmigrant visa—has had a plea of not guilty entered for him and now faces a trial in a U.S. district court in Michigan.

A federal grand jury on Aug. 7 indicted Olafs Ozoliņš on three felony counts, including possession of fradulent immigration documents, false altering of passports and production of a false identifiation document, according to the criminal complaint.

A federal marshall arrested Ozoliņš Aug. 10 in the Calhoun County Jail in Battle Creek, Mich., according to court documents.

He is charged in one count of possessing a counterfeit nonimmigrant visa in the name of an alias and a counterfeit Social Security card in his own name. In a second count, he is charged with altering two Latvian passports, substituting his photograph for those of the people in the passports. The third count alleges Ozoliņš produced a Michigan state identification card in the name of an alias.

Ozoliņš was arraigned Aug. 15 in Grand Rapids and, according to court documents, stood mute, so the court entered a plea of not guilty. Bail was set at USD 250,000 and Ozoliņš was returned to the custody of U.S. marshalls.

His next court date is Sept. 10, when a pretrial conference is scheduled in Kalamazoo.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

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