A Lafayette man was sentenced Friday to one year in federal prison on charges of defrauding undocumented immigrants on false promises he could help smooth over their legal troubles.
Edwin Zavala Jr., 24, also was ordered to pay $23,050 in restitution.
Prosecutors said Zavala sent mass mailings touting his services to federal immigration detention centers across the country.
After receiving payments from the immigrants or their relatives, he failed to offer any assistance and would cease communication, prosecutors said.
Zavala operated under the business names United Immigration Consulting and National Immigration Services from 2014 to 2016.
According to the indictment, he offered to represent immigrants at deportation proceedings, assist them in obtaining work permits and bond them out of detention facilities at costs ranging from $400 to $10,000.
Investigators alleged Zavala obtained more than $40,000 from 40 or more immigration detainees or their family or friends.
He pleaded guilty last year to one count of wire fraud.