US investigators target Florida-based fake marriage scheme



Estimated read time: Less than a minute

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

MELBOURNE, Fla. (AP) — U.S. authorities say they've broken up a fraudulent marriage scheme linking Americans with partners from countries that once were part of the Soviet Union.

In a Florida Today report , U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement investigators said Americans were paid up to $20,000 to enter into sham marriages with foreign nationals who wanted to apply to become U.S. residents. Investigators said at least 100 people were married through the Florida-based scheme that began in 2015.

Brevard County Clerk of Courts spokesman Tyler Winik said local authorities noticed a large number of marriage license applications from "out-of-state individuals from similar countries."

Nine people have been arrested. Two have pleaded guilty. Marriage fraud is punishable by up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

___

Information from: Florida Today (Melbourne, Fla.), http://www.floridatoday.com

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

The Associated Press

    SIGN UP FOR THE KSL.COM NEWSLETTER

    Catch up on the top news and features from KSL.com, sent weekly.
    By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to KSL.com's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    KSL Weather Forecast