Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Officials Arrest 11 in California Involved in Using Phony Weddings to Obtain Citizenship

Calling it one of the biggest operations of its kind in the country, federal authorities Tuesday arrested 11 men and women in L.A. County, Orange County and the Bay Area for operating an alleged phony marriage scheme that targeted Asians seeking U.S. citizenship. Authorities said the document ring, which charged Chinese and Vietnamese nationals up to $60,000 to marry American citizens to obtain green cards, was unusually sophisticated. The couples produced fake wedding photographs, joint tax returns and even love letters. Marriage fraud is not a new phenomenon," said Virginia Kice, a spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement whose office is in Orange County, "but clearly this scheme was one of the most ambitious and creative we've ever encountered." Source: Anna Gorman and David Reyes, Los Angeles Times, latimes.com. For more information, please click here (last visited December 1, 2005, reo.)

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