Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - Customs and Border Protection officers intercepted a Mexican impostor to a United States citizen’s passport at Philadelphia International Airport Sunday night.

The woman, who arrived on a flight from Mexico City, Mexico, presented a U.S. passport belonging to a 16-year-old United States citizen girl to the inspecting CBP officer.  The officer examined the passport and suspected the woman of being an impostor due to what he perceived as a facial mismatch to the passport photo.  During a secondary examination, CBP officers confirmed the woman was an 18-year-old Mexican national.

Posing as someone else when attempting to enter the United States is a serious violation of U.S. immigration law that could result in criminal prosecution.  After a thorough investigation criminal prosecution was ultimately not pursued in this case and the woman was ordered removed under administrative U.S. immigration law. 

The woman departed on a flight to Mexico Tuesday afternoon.  Inadmissible foreign nationals often attempt to use U.S. passports belonging to others to attempt illegal entry into the United States.  The documents may be stolen, purchased or “borrowed” passports.

“A CBP officer’s primary mission is to protect our nation from people and goods that would do us harm, and we did exactly that with the interception of this imposter,” said Casey Durst, CBP’s Director of the Baltimore Field Office.  “We remain ever vigilant against the entry of travelers masquerading as others and we are determined to not let that happen at our Ports of Entry.  Enforcing our immigration laws is just one way that CBP contributes to the safety and security of America.”

Almost a million times each day, CBP officers welcome international travelers into the U.S.  In screening both foreign visitors and returning U.S. citizens, CBP uses a variety of techniques to intercept immigration violators, narcotics, unreported currency, weapons, prohibited agriculture, counterfeit consumer goods, and other illicit products, and to assure that global tourism remains safe and strong.