Taipei, May 28 (CNA) Taiwan will deport an Italian man who has lived in Taiwan using the passport of a deceased American citizen for more than a decade, the National Immigration Agency said Monday.
The man had made dozens of entries to Taiwan over the past 12 years using an American passport with his own name that was originally obtained by taking on the identity of the deceased American nearly 30 years ago, an immigration official told CNA.
He was caught when trying to renew the passport at the Taipei office of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), which then reported the man to the immigration agency, the official said.
The middle-aged man, who has been detained in New Taipei, will be deported back to Italy "in the near future," the official said.
While in the United States in the 1980s, the man pretended to be the deceased American man, who was roughly the same age as him, and he successfully applied for a birth certificate and other identity cards in his name.
The Italian national was able to do so because at that time, agencies in the U.S. responsible for recording births and deaths were not connected by computer, the official said.
According to a local media report, the man later went to the Philippines, where he changed the name of his passport back to his original Italian name through the U.S. embassy there in 1993.
Though it was unclear how the AIT picked up on the fraud when the Italian man tried to renew the passport, the immigration official thought U.S. authorities may have checked on the name change and found that the name in the original passport was that of a deceased man.
(By Elaine Hou)