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Cuban man pleads guilty in ID theft

LOCKPORT – A resident alien from Cuba faces possible deportation in the wake of his guilty plea Thursday to a felony for using a forged credit card to make $162.38 worth of purchases at a Home Depot store in Batavia.

Speaking through a Spanish-language interpreter, Jose M. Cabrera, 42, of Schiller Street, Buffalo, admitted to second-degree identity theft and was held for sentencing June 29 by Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon. The judge said she is inclined to sentence Cabrera to a stint in the state prison system’s drug treatment center.

The card was forged Sept. 27 using personal information for an account holder at Cornerstone Community Federal Credit Union in Lockport. Cabrera admitted forging the man’s signature on the store receipt.

It is Cabrera’s second felony; he was convicted of a marijuana possession charge in 2009. Defense attorney Thomas J. Eoannou said the question of deportation is tied up in the legalities of the changing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba, but Cabrera could be vulnerable.