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Article updated: 1/10/2014 5:13 PM

Judge delays counterfeiters' sentencing


A federal judge in Chicago has agreed to delay sentencing of three men in one of the largest counterfeit-documentation schemes of its kind.

The Chicago-based operation generated about $3 million in annual sales of fake Social Security cards, driver's licenses and other documents. It also involved a murder in Mexico.

Julio Leija-Sanchez, Manuel Leija-Sanchez and Gerardo Salazar-Rodriguez each face a mandatory life sentence. But Judge Rebecca Pallmeyer agreed to delay the sentencing hearing scheduled for Friday after receiving word of a related investigation in Mexico.

Prosecutors say Salazar-Rodriguez carried out the murder of an up-and-coming rival in Mexico City.

Jurors convicted the men of multiple charges last year.

Sentencing is now set for Feb. 7.

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