Fake Passports

Fraud soars, enforcement lags

After Drug Enforcement Administration agents nabbed a Chilean cocaine smuggler in Beverly Hills, Calif., they found in his bank safety deposit box only one item, a fraudulent U.S. passport. The phony passport and the forged visa have become standard equipment for drug traffickers, illegal aliens and others seeking a sure if shadowy passage abroad. A 1976 Justice Department report estimated that 80% of all hard drugs flowing into the U.S. were smuggled in with the aid of fraudulent passports. Today as many as 300,000 fugitives and terrorists use bogus...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!