Venezuelan Citizen Linked to UGA Student Murder Faces Fraud Charges in Georgia Federal Court

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Diego Ibarra, a Venezuelan citizen, appeared in a federal court in Athens, Georgia, on Feb. 23, facing charges of possessing a fraudulent green card. The 28-year-old is set to undergo a standard preliminary hearing on Thursday, March 7, at 10 a.m., as mandated by a U.S. Magistrate Judge during his initial court appearance.

Ibarra, if found guilty, could face up to ten years in prison for the alleged possession of the fraudulent document. Notably, Ibarra is the brother of Jose Antonio Ibarra, also of Venezuelan nationality, who is currently facing state charges related to the homicide of Laken Hope Riley. Jose Antonio Ibarra’s charges include malice murder, felony murder, and several other serious offenses.

The investigation into Diego Ibarra’s case is being led by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), with collaboration from various law enforcement agencies including the FBI, GBI, Athens-Clarke County Police Department, University of Georgia Police Department, and Clarke County Sheriff’s Office.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Mike Morrison is tasked with prosecuting the case against Diego Ibarra.