Good News and Bad About an Immigration/Marriage Fraud Case

There's both good news and bad about an alien in the courts for immigration-related marriage fraud.

The good news, and this is unusual, is that he got caught and the Seventh Circuit has overruled his appeal. He is Kiril Hristov Vidinski, and he paid a citizen to marry him for immigration benefits. He has been an illegal alien in the United States for 18 years.

Topics: Marriage Fraud

Visa Mills Revisited, or a Nightmare Come True

As the Obama administration has appropriately, if belatedly, started to crack down on the sleaziest of the for-profit vocational schools such as Corinthian Colleges and ITT, I worried that one or more of these entities, which had formerly victimized low-income Americans would, once they lost their Pell grants, turn to foreign students. Neither did. Both filed for bankruptcy.

Halloween Special: Benefits for Living Aliens Based on Ghostly Relatives

Just in time for Halloween, the Department of Homeland Security has reminded us that it grants legal immigration status to some aliens based on the ghostly hardships of the aliens' relatives — even though those hardships have been obliterated by death.

This is meant to be a footnote to an earlier posting by my colleague Dan Cadman on the broader subject of how DHS has stretched the concept of "extreme hardship" to the extreme in order to make it easier for the government to grant legal status to aliens using claims that should they be deported, that would cause an "extreme hardship" to someone else.

Attention Would-Be EB-5 Investors: Avoid Putting Your Money into Charter Schools

There is a new trend in the EB-5 (immigrant investor) visa program — placing those funds in charter schools.

The EB-5 program rewards rich aliens with a handful of green cards following a half-million-dollar investment into a government sanctioned, but not guaranteed, project. Charter schools are 99-percent-plus supported by local taxpayer funds and provide tuition-free education; they are usually private entities lightly regulated by local school boards. EB-5 is a federal program; charter schools operate at the local level and are not regulated by the federal government.

There are three main reasons for alien investors to avoid charter school investments:

GAO Finds Most Funding in EB-5 Projects Is NOT from Alien Investors

The majority of the money invested in projects that attract EB-5 (investor visa) funding does not come through that program; it comes from mainstream capital sources. But despite this fact, the alien investors continue to be given sets of green cards for their half-million-dollar inputs. The marginal significance of the EB-5 funds was described in a recently released report by the Government Accountability Office.

10 Executives Indicted in Scheme to Use B-2 Aliens as Workers

Back in 2011, a retail store executive must have said "Let's stop using those expensive H-1B workers and switch to foreign workers on tourist visas."A Virginia-based business, which runs some of those kiosks you see in malls, did just that and now 10 of its executives and other staffers face 34 criminal counts and the prospect of years in federal prison. The story came to light when one of the 10 pleaded guilty, an act that in similar circumstances leads other conspirators to do the same thing. (Aliens on tourist visas are not allowed to work in the United States.)

Los Angeles Terminates Three Gulen Schools for Hiring Turkish H-1B Teachers

In a precedent-setting decision, the Los Angeles Board of Education — by a six-to-nothing vote — shut down three charter schools because they had used the H-1B program to replace resident teachers with aliens from Turkey, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The three schools, called Magnolia Public Schools, all were affiliated with the Gulen Movement led by the self-exiled Turkish Muslim cleric, Fethullah Gulen, who is regarded as a cult leader by many.