A South Korean national awaiting deportation after felony charges against him were dropped was recently charged again and extradited back to Juneau.
Sung Hun Bag, 40, who was found to be living in the country illegally in Juneau in early January, was being held at a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention facility pending his removal from the United States. He had waived his right to an immigration hearing and was prepared to return to his home country when a grand jury handed up an indictment about two weeks later on Jan. 20.
The indictment charges Bag with four counts of second-degree forgery in the second degree for possessing two fake California driver’s licenses, a forged resident alien card and a forged social security card.
Bag entered not guilty pleas to the four charges through his attorney in Juneau Superior Court during a hearing on Thursday.
He is represented by Assistant Public Defender Grace Lee and is presently being held on $20,000 bail at Lemon Creek Correctional Center.
Juneau Superior Court Judge Philip Pallenberg scheduled a four-day hearing on the case for April 16.
The District Attorney’s Office had originally charged Bag after his Jan. 4 arrest with two felony counts of second-degree forgery, according to criminal information documents. Court records show those charges were dropped as he was turned over to ICE. Prosecutors could not be reached for comment on why those charges were dropped.
According to the original affidavit filed on Jan. 5 by Assistant District Attorney Angie Kemp, Bag was found in possession of fake IDs when authorities were executing a search warrant at a residence in the 100 block of Front Street for a separate criminal case, according to charging documents. A Juneau Police Department officer discovered, upon contacting ICE about Bag’s immigration status, that Bag had tried to enter the country in Los Angeles via Mexico with a forged passport in 2000, according to the affidavit.
Lori Haley, a spokesperson for ICE’s western region, said in an earlier interview, generally speaking, once a criminal case is resolved and a sentence, if any, is served, the defendant would once again be turned over to the agency to be deported.
• Contact reporter Emily Russo Miller at 523-2263 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.