The Department of Justice announced Friday that 19 foreign nationals have been charged with voting or registering to vote illegally during the 2016 presidential race.
The defendants are from a variety of countries, including Mexico, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, the Philippines, Nigeria and Germany, according to a press release from the DOJ.
The indictment was handed down by a federal grand jury in Wilmington, N.C.
According to the charging documents, some of the defendants are accused of making false claims about U.S. citizenship in order to register to vote.
Separate criminal charges were filed against some from this group and others for voting in the 2016 election.
Additionally, the grand jury returned an indictment charging Denslo Allen Paige, 66, with aiding and abetting Guadalupe Espinosa-Pena of Mexico in falsely claiming U.S. citizenship in order to register to vote.
“Immigration and Customs Enforcement is said to be taking the lead in investigating the cases,” The Hill said.
“Conviction for a false claim of U.S. citizenship in order to register to vote and voting by an alien carries a maximum penalty of six years in prison, a $350,000 fine and a term of supervised release following any imprisonment,” the news outlet added.
President Donald Trump ordered the creation of a voter fraud commission months after taking office, but disbanded it earlier this year after multiple states refused to provide the voter data requested.
Shortly after winning the 2016 contest by an Electoral College tally of 304-227, Trump contended he would have also won the popular vote, but for the millions who voted illegally.
In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 27, 2016
He pointed to Virginia, New Hampshire and California as states where serious voter fraud occurred.
Serious voter fraud in Virginia, New Hampshire and California – so why isn't the media reporting on this? Serious bias – big problem!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 28, 2016
A study by the research organization Just Facts determined in the 2008 and the 2012 presidential elections as many as 5.7 million noncitizens may have voted, The Washington Times reported.
If California’s results were removed from the 2016 total, Trump would have won the popular vote by over 1 million votes.
After Trump’s election in November 2016, a former ICE agent bolstered the then-president-elect’s claim that large numbers of illegal immigrants likely voted in the race.
Retired ICE Special-Agent-In-Charge Claude Arnold told Fox News, “I worked in six locations across the United States. I probably arrested more than 1,000 illegal aliens in my career and I routinely encountered people who were in possession of voter registration cards.”
“As a part of my interview of them when they were arrested, I would ask them, ‘Do you or have you voted?’ and often, I would get the answer ‘yes,’” he said.
Arnold said, “So in every neighborhood where there is a significant illegal alien population, there are at least several document vendors who supply the service [of creating false forms of identification] including Social Security cards.”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.