Former Va. man faces charges of voter registration fraud

WASHINGTON — A former Alexandria, Virginia, resident faces up to 40 years in prison on charges of voter registration fraud.

The Alexandria office of the Commonwealth’s Attorney said in a statement that Vafalay Massaquoi, 30, was working for a local advocacy group seeking to register new voters this spring when he allegedly forged four voter registration applications by inventing applicants.

When the falsified applications were filed with the Alexandria Office of the General Registrar, they brought the matter to the attention of the Commonwealth’s Attorney as required by law, the commonwealth’s attorney’s office said.

Massaquoi is charged with four felonies — two counts each of falsifying a public record and of voter registration fraud. Each carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

“Given the recent public attention to claims of election fraud, I think it is important to note that there is no allegation that any illegal vote was actually cast in this case,” Commonwealth’s Attorney Bryan L. Porter said in the statement.

“Furthermore, since the fraudulent applications involved fictitious people, had the fraud not been uncovered the risk of actual fraudulent votes being cast was low. However, any such offense is extremely serious and can degrade the confidence we as citizens justly have in our system of elections.”

Porter said in the statement that his office was notified of the alleged fraud in June, and that the police sought warrants for Massaquoi in July, but he’d left Alexandria by then. He was arrested near Philadelphia and extradited to Alexandria on Thursday and arraigned on Friday, the statement said.

He has a preliminary hearing Dec. 13.

Rick Massimo

Rick Massimo came to WTOP, and to Washington, in 2013 after having lived in Providence, R.I., since he was a child. He's the author of "A Walking Tour of the Georgetown Set" and "I Got a Song: A History of the Newport Folk Festival."

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