Greenville man posed as immigration officer, scammed victims for $70k

Michael Ruiz (Courtesy: Greenville Police Dept.)

GREENVILLE, SC (WSPA) – A man is accused of posing as an immigration officer and scamming 6 victims of more than $70,000, according to Greenville Police.

GPD says they join a Homeland Security task force on human trafficking laws in late 2016.

They got tips about possible victims of human trafficking.

They say their investigation led them to Michael Ruiz.

Ruiz represented himself to people as an immigration officer and police officer who could help them with their legal status and get them legal documents in exchange for money, according to the report.

They say Ruiz was introduced to his victims through word of mouth and extorted more than $70,000 from six victims.

Ruiz is currently being held in the Greenville County Detention Center on no bond and is charged with the following offenses:
Trafficking 1st Offense – 4 Counts
Blackmail or Extortion – 4 Counts
Obtaining Signature or Property under False Pretenses – 4 Counts
Fraudulently Impersonating an Officer to Secure Property – 4 Counts
Impersonating Law Enforcement Officer – 1 Count
Financial Identity Fraud – 2 Counts
Alteration/Sale of Fictitious License – 1 Count
Conspiracy – 1 Count

Anyone who thinks Michael Ruiz may have victimized them is asked to call the Greenville Police Department at 864-271-5333 or email

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