Uncle Sam's restaurants raided on suspicion of ID theft

Uncle Sam's restaurants raided on suspicion of ID theft

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PHOENIX -

Two popular valley restaurants are still shut down after deputies raided them on Wednesday. Deputies were looking for workers suspected of identity theft.

Nine people were arrested, and deputies are still looking for 60 others. They're accused of using fake IDs to get work at Uncle Sam's.

"I'm an avid Uncle Sam's eater, I go there all the time. Unfortunately I had no idea and if I did, it didn't really bother me. Food was outstanding," says customer Alexander Gonzalez.

Deputies served search warrants at Uncle Sam's restaurants in north Phoenix and Peoria along with the owner's home office in Scottsdale.

They are suspected of hiring workers who were using fake IDs.

Some people question the timing of the raid. It happened on the same day a judge allowed a couple to stay in the country after being arrested during one of the sheriff's raids.

But Arpaio says it was a 9-month investigation that uncovered 120 people hired illegally since October of last year.

Many of the identity theft victims have agreed to help MCSO with prosecute the offenders.

"Their identification was stolen and used by these employees," said Sheriff Joe Arpaio. "We have victims that are willing to testify so this is a serious problem."

Those arrested will be charged with ID theft. It's a felony charge which means they won't be able to bond out of jail.

Those arrested:

Jose Artemo Aguilar-Flores (02/07/79)

Fernando Abundez-Gonzalez (12/18/77)

Marcial Reyes-Gonzalez (01/09/78)

Jorge Nava-Lares (08/27/78)

Victor Moran-Vargas (04/12/89)

Emigdio Munoz-Gonzalez (04/09/73)

Rene Ramirez (11/30/79)

Valentin Villanueva-Fernandez (11/03/80)

Gerardo Zavala-Zavala (12/28/86)

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