Probation ordered in forgery case

Published 8:36 am Monday, November 22, 2010

An Austin woman who was using an alias to work at Quality Pork Processors was convicted of felony forgery and sentenced to three years of supervised probation Friday in Mower County Court.

As part of her probation, Isabel Estela Garcia-Lopez, 34, must cooperate with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and complete 40 hours of community service.

Two other counts of felony forgery were dismissed after Garcia-Lopez pleaded guilty to the charges in August.

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According to a criminal complaint, the issue arose in December, when a 25-year-old man who was in jail for allegedly assaulting Garcia-Lopez told authorities that she used the ID “Belen Viramontes” to gain employment.

The man, who said the two had moved to Austin from Illinois together, added that Garcia-Lopez was in the country illegally and that she had fraudulent documents at their 710 Ninth Street Northeast residence.

He also said that Garcia-Lopez had worked at Quality Pork Processors in Austin under the alias several years ago.

Garcia-Lopez told investiators that she was born in Guatemala but had come to the U.S. illegally, cour records said. Garcia-Lopez said she bought a birth certificate and Social Security card from an unidentified Austin man.