US & World

Cuban man sentenced for mail fraud, ID theft

A Cuban man has been sentenced to more than five years in federal prison for posing as an attorney to represent detainees in immigration court in San Pedro.

Raul Ernest Alonso-Prieto was sentenced Monday after reaching a plea deal with federal prosecutors in December.

Prosecutors say Alonso-Prieto was released from a Southern California immigration detention center in 2006 because the U.S. does not deport people to Cuba.

After his release, Alonso-Prieto used an assumed name and the California Bar number that had belonged to a dead Florida attorney to represent detainees in immigration court. He also invented a fictional Christian charitable legal services organization that he called the Amicus Curaie Foundation.

He pleaded guilty to mail fraud and identity theft.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.