On April 1, authorities arrested immigration consultants in California and Texas on charges of conspiracy and visa fraud. According to the indictment, the defendants are accused of operating a fraud scheme through an immigration consulting firm, submitting numerous false H-1B visa petitions to give themselves a competitive edge. Among other things, this story highlights how hiring an immigration lawyer rather than relying on non-attorney consultants will reduce the risk of being involved in criminal activity.
Defendants Allegedly Committed Visa Fraud
The defendants in the case, Kishore Dattapuram, Kumar Aswapathi, and Santosh Giri, operated Nanosemantics, Inc., a company in Santa Clara, CA, dedicated to placing skilled foreign workers with Bay-area software and technology companies.
According to the Justice Department and Department of Homeland Security, the defendants submitted fraudulent documentation claiming that immigrants had already been offered specific jobs with various companies. In reality, Nanosemantics maintained a pool of qualified immigrants that could be placed with local businesses on demand, giving themselves a competitive edge over rival consulting firms.
Why These Actions Are Illegal
The H-1B visa is reserved for highly skilled foreign nationals coming to the U.S. to work with a specific employer. To qualify, a business must submit the petition on the worker’s behalf, providing information on the role they’ve been offered, the salary, and where they will be working. In submitting a fraudulent document to get visas for workers who had not yet been offered a position, the defendants committed visa fraud.
How Immigration Lawyers Can Reduce Your Risk
The defendants are also accused of coaching foreign workers on how to cover up the fraud and maintain secrecy. It’s unclear whether these beneficiaries were aware that Nanosemantics was breaking the law, but all foreign workers involved in the conspiracy will likely be deported. Immigration lawyers are held to the highest legal and ethical standards, so hiring a legal representative to help with your petition will reduce your chances of being involved in criminal activity.
As established members of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, the legal team at Berd & Klauss, PLLC is dedicated to providing high-quality legal advice and ethical service to clients from across the world. Whether you’re hoping to become a citizen or applying for an H-1B visa, these NYC immigration lawyers will guide you through the process and strive to achieve the best possible outcome. Visit their website for more on their broad range of services, follow their Twitter for more immigration news and updates, or call (212) 461-7152 to schedule a consultation today.