Doctor, assistant arrested for altering fingerprints


PEABODY, Mass. ( –- A doctor from the Dominican Republic and his assistant were arrested for conspiring to harbor illegal aliens by altering their fingerprints surgically, according to

The doctor Danilo Montero-Ramirez, 61, and his assistant, Teresa Araujo-Martinez, 40, were arrested Nov. 16 following an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in Peabody, said.

HSI special agents found out that Montero-Ramirez, who is a licensed doctor in the Dominican Republic, was traveling to the United States to perform surgery on illegal aliens to alter their fingerprints. Montero-Ramirez and Araujo-Martinez planned to perform surgery on Nov. 16, but were arrested before they got the chance. They were going to charge $4,500 per surgery.

Special agents confiscated surgical cutting equipment, bandages, gauze, prescription and pain medication as well as syringes when they made the arrest, according to If convicted on the charge of conspiracy to harbor aliens, both could be looking at a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, three years supervised release and a fine of $250,000. If convicted on the charge of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance, both face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $1 million, said.

For more on this story, visit