Friday, May 13, 2005
A U.S. Immigration and and Customs Enforcement Press Release reports the indictment of TWO LAW FIRMS and four individuals, including two attorneys. The 149 count indictment charges "conspiracy to commit immigration fraud in Maryland, Washington, D.C., and Virginia during a four-year period from April 2001 until the present." The press release states that "[t]he indictment alleges that the defendants profited from the use of fraudulent practices to thwart immigration laws in order to obtain work visas for alien clients who were charged legal fees as high as $22,000." Additionally the press release states:
"One of the fraudulent aspects of these applications and petitions was that the defendants listed Maryland businesses, including an employment agency, a pizza restaurant and a construction company, as the official sponsors for the alien applicants when, in fact, the owners of the businesses never agreed to sponsor them. Some of the documents filed by the defendants contained the forged signatures of the business owners and/or listed false work experience for the alien applicants. * * * The indictment further alleges that to facilitate the conspiracy some of the payments from the alien applicants were deposited into bank accounts controlled by companies formed by some of the defendants."