Man indicted for withdrawing over $30,000 using fake ID

Posted on Aug 24 2020


A man was charged in federal court for withdrawing over $30,000 from a bank account of his brother who was in prison at the time. 

An indictment charged Brian Galang Lizama with bank fraud and aggravated identity theft. 

The indictment was filed on seal before the U.S. District Court for the NMI last July 30. It was unsealed Friday after Lizama was brought before the court. The court appointed Colin Thompson as his counsel. 

The Federal Bureau of Investigation served the summons to Lizama last Aug. 3 at the Department of Corrections, where he is currently an inmate for burglary and theft, to appear in federal court Friday. 

After the initial court appearance hearing, Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona ordered the U.S. Marshal to return Lizama to jail. 

According to the indictment, between Dec. 23, 2019 and on Feb. 5, 2020 in the District of the NMI, Lizama fraudulently obtained a Saipan Mayor’s Office identification card in the name of his brother who was in prison at the time. Lizama then used that identification card to make a series of withdrawals totaling over $30,000 from his brother’s Bank of Guam savings account. 

The U.S. government, through assistant U.S. attorney Garth Backe, seeks forfeiture to the U.S. government of any property “constituting, or derived from, proceeds obtained” as a result of committing the offenses.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a senior reporter of Saipan Tribune. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has covered all news beats in the CNMI. He is a recipient of the CNMI Supreme Court Justice Award. Contact him at

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