Monday, May 18, 2009

Report a crime; Get deported.

Photo used under Creative Commons from Padraic.

The Salt Lake City Tribune has a story about a young but undocumented couple from Uruguay that was scammed out of several thousand dollars by an unscrupulous immigration consultant. The couple reported the crime to immigration authorities, helped the government's case by signing sworn statements and by participating in the investigation. Four years later, the government dropped the case because of "lack of evidence." Despite being allegedly offered "work visas" for their cooperation, the government did not provide them to the couple or any of the 28 victims. Rather, the government is now placing the victims in deportation proceedings. The article also quotes the Salt Lake City Police Chief as saying, "If there's a fear that when they [undocumented immigrants] come forward, they in fact will be deported, they won't come forward and people will go unnecessarily victimized." Indeed, scammers, notarios, and "immigration consultants" continue to prey on the undocumented because they know that their victims will not come forward for fear of deportation. Cases like this only perpetuate the problem. Please remember that only licensed attorneys or "accredited representatives" from recognized organizations are able to provide immigration assistance. For a list of recognized organizations and their accredited representatives by city and state, click here.

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