Some illegal immigrants are reportedly faking violent crimes against them in order to secure a special visa that will put them on a path to citizenship.
WSOTV in North Carolina reported that Oscar Beltran, an illegal immigrant who “told police two men approached him in a parking lot on Kilborne Drive, hit him in the forehead with a gun and stole $6,000,” tried to scam his way to a U-Visa. Police later “determined that Beltran had staged the robbery — they say in court papers — in order to get a U-Visa because he had an upcoming immigration hearing.” Beltran’s story is not uncommon.
The “U Visa” is meant for illegal immigrants like Christian Fernandez, who came to the country illegally as a child. Fernandez was reportedly “shot in the back outside a club” and doctors told him he would be “paralyzed from the chest down for the rest of his life.”
As WSOTV noted, the “federal government awards 10,000 U Visas a year to victims of certain — mostly violent — crimes and their family members,” and “Fernandez and his mother received theirs in July.”
But illegal immigrants who see the visas as a golden ticket are also fraudulently applying for the visas, falsely claiming that they have been victims of violent crimes. For instance, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department has reportedly had 700 applications so far this year, according to the outlet.
Since a U-Visa “is good for four years and just filling out an application can delay or stop deportation proceedings altogether,” illegal immigrants can be incentivized to falsify crimes against them to try to secure a U-Visa. Robyn Withrow, “the assistant district attorney in charge of the screening process,” told the outlet that “she has seen about 250 cases so far in 2014 and passed only about 30 percent on for further consideration in the process, which eventually ends at the federal U-Visa office in Vermont.”
During the border crisis over the summer, House Democrats suggested that some of the illegal immigrant juveniles who were apprehended could be eligible for U-Visas to allow them to remain in the United States and be put on a path to eventual citizenship.
As Breitbart News has reported, a U-Visa, which is available “to minors who have been the victims of certain serious crimes, suffered mental or physical trauma, and are cooperating with a law enforcement investigation,” would allow illegal immigrant children to gain “temporary legal status and work eligibility for a maximum of four years.”