Many people believe that marriage to a U.S. citizen will be their ticket to the U.S. They get married to U.S. citizens or green card holders for the sole purpose of getting a green card. This is marriage fraud, a threat to national security and a crime under federal law.
U.S. immigration authorities take such frauds seriously. They uncover a lot of fraudulent marriages every year. Foreign nationals and U.S. citizens or green card holders who involve in such fraud will face criminal penalties.
According to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), there are different types of marriage fraud. They include green card lottery fraudulent marriage and “Mail-order” marriage. Other kinds of fraud are when foreign nationals pay U.S. citizens to marry them so that they can immigrate. Or, when they defraud U.S. citizens and make them believe that the marriage is real, though they are doing it for immigration purposes.
If uncovered, ICE will penalize those involved with marriage fraud. These individuals will be imprisoned for up to five years and fined. The penalties apply to the foreign nationals and U.S. citizens or green card holders who involve in this crime. Another charge that could come with marriage fraud is visa fraud. Making false statements is also a crime. These charges that come along with marriage fraud will carry additional penalties.
Detecting marriage fraud is a top priority for ICE and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Terrorists and other criminals use marriage fraud to get into the U.S. They get unlawful employment and conduct criminal activities. U.S. citizens and permanent residents taking part in marriage fraud, often unknowingly aid terrorists and criminal agencies.
Many are not aware of the serious consequences of entering into a marriage for immigration purposes. The Marriage Fraud Initiative (MFI) aims at creating awareness by highlighting the impact of marriage fraud on the country’s national security and public safety. MFI is taking the necessary steps to put an end to this crime by educating the public about the adverse effects of this crime.