Hyattsville travel agent pleads guilty to fraud for second time

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A former Hyattsville, Maryland travel agent has pleaded guilty to a theft scheme for the second time, authorities said Tuesday.

A former Hyattsville, Maryland travel agent has pleaded guilty to a theft scheme for the second time, authorities said Tuesday.

In a statement, Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Aisha Braveboy said Lorena Balbuena-Aguiar ran an unlicensed travel agency – Azteka Travel & Services, LLC – between 2018 and 2019 that “primarily targeted the Hispanic community.



“This isn’t the first time she’s scammed individuals, but hopefully this sends the message that we won’t tolerate this,” Braveboy said. “Financial crimes are devastating to victims and we are working hard to get justice for those who profit from them.”

Balbuena-Aguilar previously pleaded guilty and was held in house arrest for performing the same scam, according to the state’s attorney’s office.

During the scam, she accepted money from victims with the promise to book their flights. Those who paid to travel via Balbuena-Aguilar were calling their airlines only to find that no payment had been made.

She would then convince the victims that “there was a mix-up with the airline”, forcing them to book another flight and promising a refund. These refunds were never received.

Balbuena-Aguilar will be sentenced on August 24 and faces up to five years in prison.

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