An Illegal Alien Soap Opera — with a Twist

By David North on May 26, 2021

So many immigration reports in the media begin with an appealing human interest story, often along these (imaginary) lines:

When Kathryn A. isn’t breast-feeding her twin daughters, one of whom she believes to be autistic, she is working as a volunteer at the local food bank, and getting ready for an eventful June, in which the paperless immigrant from Mexico will receive both a PhD in Nuclear Engineering, summa cum laude, and a JD degree, magna cum laude, from Big State University. She worries that her equally paperless lover will be tossed out of the country because of a minor brush with the law.

You get the idea.

As a minor counter to such stories, we bring you an illegal alien soap opera as extracted from the color-‘em-grey files of the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO), a quasi-judicial arm of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Every bit of it is factual.

Our central figure in this case, the petitioner, is an alien from Kenya who is here illegally after arriving 18 years ago on an F-1 visa. She sought adjustment to legal status as an “abused wife” of R-H-, a U.S. citizen. As the long story unfolds in the decision, we learn:

  • That before marrying R-H- (why the AAO uses hyphens when it covers people’s identities is not known), she and E-C-N-, presumably a male illegal alien, had three (U.S. citizen) children together;
  • In 2010, she was put into removal proceedings for her expired student visa;
  • The next year, she married R-H- and after a while he filed papers with USCIS for her green card;
  • Then USCIS, in 2014, in an unusually assertive posture, denied the application on the grounds of “failure to establish ... that the Petitioner entered into her marriage to R-H- in good faith”;
  • Meanwhile, in 2015 and 2017, she and E-C-N- had two more children;
  • In 2015, she filed another petition, this time accusing R-H- of abusing her, which, if successful, would have made her a “self-petitioning spouse” with an accompanying green card; at first this was successful, but in 2018 USCIS sent her a NOIR (notice of intent to revoke);
  • In the NOIR, the agency told her that E-C-N- had also engaged in a sham marriage; and
  • The petitioner appealed again and it was dismissed.

But that’s not the end of the story. The petitioner had promised to pay the citizen married to E-C-N- $8,000 and was present at their wedding. The petitioner paid $4,000, but, according to the decision, “refused to pay the last $4,000 as [the petitioner] was angry that [E-C-N-] and the (nameless) U.S. citizen consummated the marriage as [the petitioner] claimed that was not part of the agreement.”

Like a good soap opera, glimpsed in the middle, we do not know if the petitioner and E-C-N- made up or who, if anyone, was deported.

Routinely this author would suggest that the audience stay tuned for further developments, but the AAO case is over, with the appeal being dismissed, and with no real names published we cannot see what happens next. Sorry.

The latest decision was filed on March 25 of this year; the case number is 8442703, and it can be seen here.