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For Immediate Release

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August 04, 2010 DUSM Tony Torres, District of Puerto Rico (787) 766-6000
U.S. Marshals Make Arrest in Identity Theft and Parental Abduction Case

San Juan, PR – Eric Timberman, the United States Marshal for the District of Puerto Rico, would like to announce that Janeth Valenzuela, wanted by the United States Marshals Service for Identity Theft and by the Phoenix, Arizona Police Department for Parental Abduction, was arrested by the U.S. Marshals led Puerto Rico Fugitive Task Force today.

Valenzuela was wanted in an indictment from the District of Arizona for Identity Theft, stemming from an investigation by the Social Security Administration in which she allegedly used social security numbers and identities belonging to other individuals to obtain benefits. After Valenzuela was interviewed by criminal investigators from the Social Security Administration, she removed her two minor children, ages 5 and 7 from school and fled the jurisdiction. Valenzuela, who is estranged from her husband, provided no notification or warning to her spouse and is subsequently wanted for questioning by the Phoenix Police Department for Parental Abduction.

The United States Marshals Service District of Arizona became involved in the case and determined that Valenzuela had fled to Puerto Rico. A collateral lead was sent to the United States Marshals led Puerto Rico Fugitive Task Force (PRFTF) to locate and arrest Valenzuela on her outstanding charges. Information was developed by the PRFTF that Valenzuela was staying at the residence of a friend and working at an outlet mall in Canovanas, Puerto Rico. This afternoon, investigators from the PRFTF were able to arrest Valenzuela at her place of employment without incident. It was determined that the two minor children were at the friend’s residence and investigators proceeded to that location and were able to locate them safely. The two children were turned over to child protective services until they can be returned to their father, and Valenzuela was booked into MDC Guaynabo on her outstanding warrants.

“Arrests like this demonstrate the effectiveness and flexibility of the task force. Today, not only was a fugitive felon arrested, but two abducted children were found and returned safely to their father,” stated Eric Timberman, United States Marshal for the District of Puerto Rico.

The U.S. Marshals led Puerto Rico Fugitive Task Force is the fugitive arm of the U.S. Marshals in Puerto Rico. In the last calendar year alone, the PRFTF arrested more than 1,250 violent fugitives.

Additional information about the U.S. Marshals can be found at http://www.usmarshals.gov.