US arrests 21 people for visa fraud via bogus university sting
Apr 06, 2016 02:22 AM EDT
The United States has made 21 arrests over suspicions of visa fraud conspiracy with more than 1,000 foreign clients. The arrests primarily came from the feds' fake university.
According to Straits Times, the federal agents set up a fake university that ensnared the suspects in operation for they are focused on delivering results regarding the illegal immigrations that became a major issue in the US presidential campaign. The prosecutors said the recruiters, brokers and employers were charged with conspiracy to commit visa fraud and harbor the foreigners to gain profit. The sentences for each is ranging from 5 to 10 years respectively.
Fox News reported that the Feds came up with a University of Northern New Jersey as their front in the bogus university sting. The website fielded no sports teams, no graduation ceremony, and no instructors or even degree programs. However, it was noted to have the tagline of 'exceptional' education for foreign students wishing to apply in the US.
The sham was created by undercover agents in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement who acted as the administrators of the fake school. Most of the more than 1,000 clients applied for to the university came from India and China and now, they might be facing deportations for their actions.
ABC News wrote that according to a law enforcement official, those who bought the phony papers work for Facebook, Google and even the US military. Nonetheless, one source claims the buyers were fully aware that they are getting fraudulent documents.
The companies stated are not getting implicated over the scheme since they are unaware of the fraud. Most of them have just found out about the employees that used fake documents.
The arrests came a year and a half after the Department of Homeland Security had lost tracks of more than 6,000 foreign nationals who have entered the United States on student visas. Chief New Jersey Prosecutor Paul Fishman said 'pay to stay' schemes damage legitimate student and foreign worker visa programs. He added that these could pose a very real threat to the national security.