An immigrant has been arrested and charged for allegedly operating a business scam that promised visas to foreign nationals who fraudulently claimed to be crime victims.
Yuridia Hernandez Linares, a 36-years-old foreign national, is accused of attempting to secure foreign nationals U visas by faking violent crimes and reporting them to the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office, according to the Star Tribune.
The U visa is a nonimmigrant visa that provides foreign crime victims and their family members a visa to remain in the United States.
According to local authorities, Linares obtained a U visa in 2016 after fraudulently claiming to federal immigration officials that she had been the victim of violent crime. Linares and her friend, police said, faked a violent crime in October 2015 where they claimed they had been robbed and cut by two men with knives.
After the fake attack, police said Linares sent a letter to the local police department requesting a U visa which was signed off on by authorities.
Linares’ business, police said, involved using box cutters and knives to cut foreign nationals who would then report to police that they had been the victims of robberies. Afterward, Linares promised her customers that she would help them secure a U visa.
Four customers of Linares’ told police they paid the woman $5,000 each to help them fraudulently obtain U visas by filing false police reports of violent crimes this year that never occurred.
Linares is currently in Hennepin County custody.
Feds: Potentially 2.2K Foreigners Posing as Abuse Victims to Obtain Visashttps://t.co/r1KiAdVkON
— John Binder 👽 (@JxhnBinder) October 3, 2019
Last month, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) detailed potential widespread abuse of the U visa program spurred by a provision in the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) in which more than 2,200 cases of potential fraud by foreign nationals have been detected since 2013, Breitbart News reported.
In Fiscal Year 2014, there were less than 200 cases of potential fraud in the U visa program. By Fiscal Year 2019, the number of potential fraud cases had increased to more than 800 — a 305 percent jump in six years.
Every year, the U.S. admits about 1.2 million legal immigrants with the overwhelming majority, nearly 70 percent, coming through the process known as “chain migration,” whereby newly naturalized citizens are allowed to bring an unlimited number of foreign nationals to the country. The mass inflow of legal immigrants is in addition to the hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens who are added to the U.S. population annually.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.