Josselin Yuliana Rodas arrested for allegely staging crime in San Rafael for a U-Visa

Published by on March 24, 2013

A woman who was robbed on a San Rafael street earlier this year has been arrested for allegedly staging that crime in an attempt to qualify for an immigration visa, police said. Josselin Yuliana Rodas, 29, was loading groceries into a car near Mi Ranchito Market on Belvedere Street along with her 16-month-old child and another woman when a masked man approached and robbed them at gunpoint, according to police.

The man demanded the victims’ purses and struck Rodas in the head and the other woman in the knee with a handgun, then snatched both purses and tore off one of the victims’ necklaces before fleeing, police said. The infant was not harmed in the incident. Police said an ongoing investigation into the robbery turned up evidence that Rodas had actually orchestrated the incident with the help of a juvenile male relative.

According to police, she had a pending immigration case and had been ordered to leave the country by a certain date. Investigators believe she planned the robbery in order to apply for a U-Visa, which may be granted to undocumented immigrants who are victims of serious crimes. Police arrested Rodas on Thursday on suspicion of willful cruelty to a child, conspiracy and making a false police report. She booked into Marin County Jail on $75,000 bail and is set to appear in court on Monday, police said.

The juvenile relative who aided in the staged armed robbery fled the country a short time after the crime and is sought by law enforcement officers. Police said the other victim in the robbery was not aware the incident had been planned.

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