Immigration Fraud Investigation leads to Bust by FBI on East Broadway

Posted on: December 18th, 2012 at 3:06 pm by

[Photo: @Nore2NV]

According to the AP, the FBI says agents have made several arrests in an immigration fraud investigation in New York City. The arrests came as agents searched law offices in Chinatown on Tuesday. Federal prosecutors were expected to charge more than two dozen people, including immigration lawyers. The alleged fraud involved immigrants seeking asylum in the United States.

The schemes alleged in today’s Indictments involved the submission of hundreds of fraudulent asylum applications on behalf of Chinese aliens by law firms in the Chinatown area of Manhattan and Queens. The defendants – lawyers and employees at 10 different law firms and their co-conspirators – including translators who work at an asylum office, profited by creating and submitting asylum applications containing false stories of persecution purportedly suffered by alien applicants. The defendants who worked at the law firms also provided the asylum applicants with educational materials related to their fabricated claims and coached the applicants to lie in their interviews with immigration authorities.

To perpetuate these schemes, the law firms made up stories of persecution that often followed one of three fact patterns: (a) forced abortions performed pursuant to China’s family planning policy; (b) persecution based on the client’s belief in Christianity; or (c) political or ideological persecution, typically for membership in China’s Democratic Party or against followers of Falun Gong.

The full announcement can be found here.

The Lo-Down is reporting that FBI agents as well as NYPD officers were stationed outside 2 East Broadway (near Bowery) and 11 East Broadway, the HSBC building at Catherine Street, this afternoon.  A short time ago, a man was led from the building as agents continue to search offices (see lead photo).

[Photo: Denia Aponte]

Recent Stories

IMG956849
A Tribute to Graffiti Artist Jason Wulf (aka DG NWC)

The graffiti community is still reeling from the tragic loss of Jason Wulf aka DG NWC (New Wave Crew) last month. The following tribute goes out to the world directly from his family. This very special group of people spoke to us on behalf of many who loved Jason. His mother, Linda Wulf: For 46 […]

Photo: Clayton Patterson
Clayton’s Corner: Dr. Dave’s Fundraising Success

Local general practicioner Dr. David Ores has been providing medical services to low-income and uninsured residents of the Lower East Side for two decades. One week ago, Dr. Dave (as neighbors refer to him) organized a desperate crowdfunding plea to remain in his office on East Second Street. He had recently learned of a $30,000 […]

Steve Croman, Photo: Daily News
Local Pols Respond to Steve Croman’s Deplorable Tenant Harassment Tactics

Last week, State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman launched a probe into the “potentially illegal tactics used by landlord Steven Croman, 47, to force rent-stabilized tenants out of their valuable apartments.” They’re looking into possible violations of both city and state statutes. In response to the far-reaching tenant harassment, local politicians naturally added their two cents to […]

elsombrero-stanton-marquee
Classic El Sombrero Signage Probably Won’t Return to the Exterior of 108 Stanton Street

Hate to burst the bubble, but the wonderfully classic El Sombrero signage will not return to the exterior of 108 Stanton Street when the reboot launches. The marquee is now a rustic wood flavor with evenly-spaced lighting. Before you reach for that tissue, though, take comfort in the knowledge that the faded relic hasn’t altogether […]

modern-fashion-1
Modern Fashion & Style Quits Orchard Street for Good

The stock of leather vendors on Orchard Street continues to freefall. Four months after Daniel’s Leather shuttered and relocated to Jersey, Modern Fashion & Style decided to call it quits. The store has been closed for over a month, its awning fabric cut out (usually the telltale sign). Not completely surprising, though. The retail unit […]

  • sammy

    ooh please, like you haven’t heard of other people dont pull scams like this.

  • LESider

    Sammy,

    Your English is so poor that I have no idea what you mean. Can you write your comment again?

  • JarekAF

    They should’ve just said they’re Cuban. They’re here now. Doing their Chinatown thing. Good for them.

    A sting like this takes a ton of resources. Good thing the FBI doesn’t have more important things to do.

  • unknown

    Finally, law enforcements are doing their job! They should have gotten rid of these scammers a long time ago!

  • s

    I wonder why the INS didn’t take care of this instead.

    Extremely relevant to this – “The Snakehead” by Patrick Keefe.

  • LESider

    Looks like Sammy and JarekAF support immigration fraud. If you read today’s NYTimes’ article on this case you’ll learn that most Chinese asylum cases are fraudulent and that 34% of all approved asylum cases are Chinese. So naming the nationality is important here. Great job FBI!

  • lee

    the uscis should revoke there grant on those lawyer office client who has been approve.they all are used fake story to get green card.