Doctor Gets 1 Year in Prison For Altering Fingerprints of Illegal Immigrants

By Allan Lengel

They say fingerprints never lie — that is unless they’re altered.

Enter Dr. Jose Elias Zaiter-Pou, 62, a Dominican doctor.

Zaiter-Pou was sentenced Thursday in U.S. District Court in Boston to one year and one day in prison for conspiring to conceal illegal immigrants from detection by altering their fingerprints, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Boston said. He will also be deported after serving his sentence.

Authorities say that Zaiter-Pou met a government informant at a hotel in Woburn, Mass., 11 miles north of Boston, and agreed to alter fingerprints for $4,500.

The doctor brought with him surgical equipment, antibiotics and pain medication.

Authorities said during the meeting, which was audio and video recorded by law enforcement, Zaiter-Pou described how he would remove part of the fingertip, then suture the tip back together to make a new, unrecognizable fingerprint.

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