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CJlove

Case moved to fraud department

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So, a friend of mine went in for her civic's test last week to become a citizen, but instead, her case has now been moved to fraud department. What can she do? 

 

She went in for her interview, but here is what went wrong. 

1) She did not write the date correctly. She moved to Hawaii on December 2011, but on her application, she wrote down December 2012. Now, she started working on January 2012. So the CO asked her, how come you started working on January 2012, when on the application, you wrote that you moved to Hawaii on December 2012? 

2) She moved to US in 2008 after her marriage with a citizen. 2011, she received her 10 year GC. Then she got divorced on 2013. Her husband was cheating on her. She can prove this because her exhubby's mistress was pregnant with his child in 2013, the same year she filed for divorce.

 

Now, the CO wants every evidence of their marriage back in 2008 to 2013. But, she doesn't have much evidence since it was long time ago. She has a lawyer, but the lawyer hasn't been helpful at all. What is the worst case scenario? What can she do? 

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Has USCIS actually issued a formal request for evidence (RFE)? If so, post it here after redacting for privacy.

 

We weren't in the room to hear the testimony, but I think the request for marriage evidence is administrative overreach (since she's not claiming eligibility based on marriage) and I'd be surprised if USCIS actually makes that request in writing. The dates thing can be explained away as a simple error. But then again, we don't know what your friend said in the interview.

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1 hour ago, afrocraft said:

Has USCIS actually issued a formal request for evidence (RFE)? If so, post it here after redacting for privacy.

 

We weren't in the room to hear the testimony, but I think the request for marriage evidence is administrative overreach (since she's not claiming eligibility based on marriage) and I'd be surprised if USCIS actually makes that request in writing. The dates thing can be explained away as a simple error. But then again, we don't know what your friend said in the interview.

The problem is that when the CO began asking questions about the mismatch information, she started to panic. I imagine how frightening it would’ve been... Interveiw with a CO is nerve wrecking in general...

 

Anyway, she got her n400 denied. Now she’s waiting for her RFE. From what I know, the CO noted that her case would be under investigation under fraud. But she already has her 10 year GC. I am a little confused to why they would want to reopen her marriage case for n400...? 

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Seems like such a drastic move for a simple mistake. I am thinking something must have been said during the interview that made the IO not only deny the n400, but also open a fraud case. My only advise is get a immigration lawyer that is experienced in such matters before she sends the RFE.

 

Good luck to your friend.

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Your friend should set up a VJ account and come here to ask these questions.  Only she knows what was said in the interview, only she will get the RFE.  It would be much more helpful for her to ask questions herself, so I suggest you encourage her to do this, no cost, easy to do, better results and advice for her.

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10 hours ago, afrocraft said:

We weren't in the room to hear the testimony, but I think the request for marriage evidence is administrative overreach (since she's not claiming eligibility based on marriage) and I'd be surprised if USCIS actually makes that request in writing. The dates thing can be explained away as a simple error. But then again, we don't know what your friend said in the interview. 

USCIS is permitted to review one's entire immigration history prior to naturalization. If they have reason to believe a benefit was obtained incorrectly or fraudulently, they can investigate and/or take action.

So they have the authority to ask for more info. The difference with applying under the 3 year bar is that has the burden placed on the applicant to show a bona fide marriage. For the 5 year rule, the burden is on USCIS to demonstrate that the benefits were obtained improperly.

As such, they don't often ask for prior marriage evidence since it's a high bar for them to prove otherwise.


Timelines:

Spoiler

AOS (I-485 + I-131 + I-765):

9/25/17: sent forms to Chicago

9/27/17: received by USCIS

10/4/17: NOA1 electronic notification received

10/10/17: NOA1 hard copy received. Social Security card being issued in married name (3rd attempt!)

10/14/17: Biometrics appointment notice received

10/25/17: Biometrics

1/2/18: EAD + AP approved (no website update)

1/5/18: EAD + AP mailed

1/8/18: EAD + AP approval notice hardcopies received

1/10/18: EAD + AP received

9/5/18: Interview scheduled notice

10/17/18: Interview

10/24/18: Green card produced notice

10/25/18: Formal approval

10/31/18: Green card received

 

K-1:

Spoiler

I-129F

12/1/17: sent

12/14/17: NOA1 hard copy received

3/10/17: RFE (IMB verification)

3/22/17: RFE response received

3/24/17: Approved!

3/30/17: NOA2 hard copy received

 

NVC

4/6/2017: Received

4/12/2017: Sent to Riyadh embassy

4/16/2017: Case received at Riyadh embassy

4/21/2017: Request case transfer to Manila, approved 4/24/2017

 

K-1

5/1/2017: Case received by Manila (1 week embassy transfer??? Lucky~)

7/13/2017: Interview: APPROVED!!!

7/19/2017: Visa in hand

8/15/2017: POE

 

 

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I don't believe that there will be any RFE sent. He already denied the N400. The denial letter should list the grounds for denial. Now you can use these grounds, correct them and appeal the N400.otherwise, like everybody thinks, they might move to revoke the LPR status . In this case they have to send her NOIR (notice of intend to revoke) and the basis for the NOIR. I believe she will have 30 days to answer to the NOIR. If she covered all the grounds that they mention she's good and she can re-apply for the N400. If she fails to do so, then they will move to revoke her LPR and issue NTA for removal in front of immigration court, where she can defend herself again. Again, they won't go through all that trouble, unless they have something solid. So only she knows the truth and the whole truth. I, personally, don't think an error with the dates can cause all that. Why don't you tell us what was on the denial letter for the N400 so we can have a more clear picture of the situation.


I-751 #1 - March 2015 (Jointly filed)

April 2015: Bio-metrics completed

11/30/2018 Interview Notice for 01/07/2019

01/07/2019: Withdrawn at the interview due to divorce and another 751 filed after the divorce and switched to the waiver case

 

I-751 #2 - March 2017 (Waiver)

April 2017: Bio-metrics completed

01/07/2019: Interview

01/14/2019: Approval Notification via Email

 

N-400 #1 Feb 2016 (Pending)(3-year Rule) 

February 2016: N-400 filed under the 3 year rule.

February 2016: Bio-metrics completed

04/29/2016: Interview Notice in the mail For 06/08/2016

06/01/2016: Interview was cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances (probably cause the 751 was still pending)

01/16/2019: Case changed online again to interview was scheduled for 03/06/2019

03/06/2019 The Interview (Can't be approved since I'm not eligible for the 3 year rule anymore, will have to file again under the 5 year rule, FML)

03/09/2019: Official Deny letter Via certified mail

 

N-400 #2 March 2019 IOE (Pending)(5-year Rule) 

03/09/2019: N-400 filed online under the 5 year rule (Within 72 hours of the interview)

03/09/2019: NOA1 via web Portal

03/18/2019: NOA1 in the mail

03/19/2019: NOA2 via web Portal. Bio-metrics for 04/02/2019

03/21/2019: Successful early walk-in Bio-metrics

 

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Why would the date of moving to Hawaii, whether it was Dec 2011 or Dec 2012, matter if she already had a 10 yr GC earlier in 2011? This doesn't seem like a likely reason for USCIS to open an investigation based on fraud. Need more info from the applicant.


Marriage: 2014-02-23 - Colombia    ROC interview/completed: 2018-08-16 - Albuquerque
CR1 started : 2014-06-06           N400 started: 2018-04-24
CR1 completed/POE : 2015-07-13     N400 interview: 2018-08-16 - Albuquerque
ROC started : 2017-04-14 CSC     Oath ceremony: 2018-09-24 – Santa Fe

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1 hour ago, Going through said:

Ask your friend what the IO seemed to focus on during the interview when it came to questions asked about her previous marriage.

Okay, the IO seemed to focus on their marriage. 

a) When did you meet? 

b) How did you guys meet? 

c) What was the reason for divorce? 

d) Why did you get the GC before the divorce? 

e) Who did you know in Hawaii before you moved (She's from the east-coast)? 

f) Why did you move to Hawaii, if you didn't know anyone? 

g) Were you seeing someone (e.g., bf) in Hawaii? 

h) How did you file for divorce from Hawaii? (She moved to Hawaii 2011, but divorced on 2013)

 

So the focus was basically on her marriage. 

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3 minutes ago, CJlove said:

e) Who did you know in Hawaii before you moved (She's from the east-coast)? 

f) Why did you move to Hawaii, if you didn't know anyone? 

g) Were you seeing someone (e.g., bf) in Hawaii? 

h) How did you file for divorce from Hawaii? (She moved to Hawaii 2011, but divorced on 2013)

Based on those 4 questions I can begin to hedge a guess on where the IO might have begun to presume fraud....largely depends on the answers she gave, though, which you didn't post above, so unable to elaborate on my guess thus far.

 

I'm also curious....was your friend the first foreigner the USC had petitioned for?  Has SHE ever had a previous petition filed on her behalf?

 

Hopefully you can get your friend to join VJ as  you may not be privy to the full story when relaying info.


Applied for Naturalization based on 5-year Residency - 96 Days To Complete Citizenship!

July 14, 2017 (Day 00) -  Submitted N400 Application, filed online

July 21, 2017 (Day 07) -  NOA Receipt received in the mail

July 22, 2017 (Day 08) - Biometrics appointment scheduled online, letter mailed out

July 25, 2017 (Day 11) - Biometrics PDF posted online

July 28, 2017 (Day 14) - Biometrics letter received in the mail, appointment for 08/08/17

Aug 08, 2017 (Day 24) - Biometrics (fingerprinting) completed

Aug 14, 2017 (Day 30) - Online EGOV status shows "Interview Scheduled, will mail appointment letter"

Aug 16, 2017 (Day 32) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Interview Scheduled, read the letter we mailed you..."

Aug 17, 2017 (Day 33) - Interview Appointment Letter PDF posted online---GOT AN INTERVIEW DATE!!!

Aug 21, 2017 (Day 37) - Interview Appointment Letter received in the mail, appointment for 09/27/17

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Naturalization Interview--- read my experience here

Sep. 27, 2017 (Day 74) - Online MYUSCIS status shows "Oath Ceremony Notice mailed"

Sep. 28, 2017 (Day 75) - Oath Ceremony Letter PDF posted online--Ceremony for 10/19/17

Oct. 02, 2017 (Day 79) -  Oath Ceremony Letter received in the mail

Oct. 19, 2017 (Day 96) -  Oath Ceremony-- read my experience here

 

 

 

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6 minutes ago, Going through said:

 

I'm also curious....was your friend the first foreigner the USC had petitioned for?  Has SHE ever had a previous petition filed on her behalf?

No, just her one ex-husband, and no one else has petitioned for her. The IO didn't believe her words, largely because she knew that her husband was cheating on her, and didn't file for divorce 2 years later? Also, because my friend was panicking, she lost words. To many questions, she replied that she didn't remember. For example, "When and where did you file for divorce?", she told me she said, "I don't remember," 

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1 hour ago, Going through said:

Part of the adjudication for the N400 is to look back and make sure the initial GC was properly approved beforehand.  If it was moved to the fraud department, It sounds like something came up during the N400 adjudication that may not have been caught beforehand/raised suspicion as to the approval of the initial visa/AOS.  

 

Ask your friend what the IO seemed to focus on during the interview when it came to questions asked about her previous marriage.

 

As for responding to the RFE---your friend may have more evidence than she realizes....tax returns for those years during her marriage, bank accounts can be requested for closed/dormant joint accounts going back even 10 years depending on how individual banks keep records, shared utility bills for previous addresses/accounts as well (there is normally a nominal fee for these though).

 

Best case scenario is that her N400 is denied due to insufficient response to the RFE, and she can continue to live in the US and just renew her GC.

Worst case scenario is that USCIS moves to revoke her LPR status after any finding of immigration fraud on her part. 

 

 

 

 

I concure this answer and add that you ask your friend find a good lawyer, I am afraid the worse case mentioned above might be coming her.

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