SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Officials announced the sentencing of a Hazleton man after they say he stole the identity of a US citizen.

According to US Attorney John C. Gurganus, in March 2021, Adrian Hernandez-Gutierrez, 36, of Hazleton, was arrested for illegally being in the United States.

Upon further investigation police say Hernandez-Gutierrez used the identity of a United States citizen, including a counterfeit social security card, to obtain a Pennsylvania Driver’s License.

Investigators stated Hernandez-Gutierrez went to use the stolen identity and ID to cash thousands of dollars in checks, to assist his employer, the owner of a Hazleton-based roofing company.

According to the release, Hernandez-Gutierrez’s actions helped his employer maintain an all-cash payroll that, in turn, allowed his employer to avoid employment tax responsibilities.

The employer, Charles Ehrenberg of Ehrenberg Roofing and Construction, Inc., has pled guilty to criminal tax violations.

Hernandez-Gutierrez was sentenced Wednesday to 2 years in prison for the crimes of aggravated identity
theft, and social security fraud.