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New Jersey Woman Pleads Guilty To Stealing From Illegal Immigrants

Maritza Chavez (Credit: Union County Prosecutor's Office)

Maritza Chavez (Credit: Union County Prosecutor’s Office)

ELIZABETH, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — A Northern New Jersey woman pleaded guilty Monday to stealing roughly $100,000 from more than two dozen illegal immigrants.

According to Union County prosecutors, 45-year-old Maritza Chavez, of Elizabeth, pleaded guilty to two separate indictments containing 26 counts overall of theft by deception.

Chavez faces up to 10 years in prison when she’s sentenced on March 14. She will also be required to pay $104,000 in restitution.

Prosecutors say Chavez represented herself as an attorney and told clients she would file documents with federal immigration officials on their behalf. She charged anywhere from $80 to $6,000 per client for what she described as legal services, which she wasn’t trained to perform.

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