ATLANTA IMMIGRATION ATTORNEY PLEADS GUILTY TO CONSPIRING TO HARBOR ILLEGAL ALIENS IN THE UNITED STATES
May 6, 2011
Parmesh Dixit Filed Fraudulent Applications for Visas on Behalf of His Clients
ATLANTA, GA - PARMESH DIXIT, 40, of Alpharetta, Georgia, pleaded guilty today in federal district court to a charge of conspiracy to harbor illegal aliens as part of a money-making scheme involving illegal aliens using fake documents supplied by DIXIT.
United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates said, “As a specialized immigration attorney, this defendant used his knowledge of immigration laws and regulations to defraud the government and secure employment visas for aliens who did not qualify for them. DIXIT got rich off of his willingness to break the law and over-charge his clients for his filing of false applications for visas with the government. DIXIT has now pleaded guilty, must surrender his law license, and faces prison.”
“Immigration fraud poses a severe threat to national security and public safety because it creates a vulnerability that may enable terrorists, criminals, and illegal aliens to gain entry to and remain in the United States,” said Brock Nicholson, Special Agent in Charge of ICE HSI in Atlanta. “ICE will continue using its Document and Benefit Fraud Task Forces to target unscrupulous attorneys who knowingly circumvent our immigration laws and procedures for financial reasons.”
Richard Walker, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Atlanta Region for the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigations said, “Today's guilty plea demonstrates our unwavering commitment to ensure the integrity of the Foreign Labor Certification Visa Program, especially from fraud committed by immigration attorney's such as Mr. Dixit. Our office will continue to work with our partners on the Document and Benefit Fraud Task Force to combat issues related to visa fraud.”
According to United States Attorney Yates, the charges and other information presented in court: DIXIT conspired with others to assist aliens seeking visas that would allow the alien to enter or remain in the United States. DIXIT submitted fraudulent applications to United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, making it appear that aliens were eligible for work visas when they were not.
Lawful visa programs exist through which certain qualified and high-level managers in overseas companies can legally come to the United States to work. DIXIT told clients he could obtain “green cards” or resident alien status for them through these lawful visa programs. Because DIXIT's clients did not in fact qualify for these programs, DIXIT put false information on his clients' applications in order to make it appear that the clients did qualify. The fraudulent information included the applicant’s prior employment, biographic data, and the jobs purportedly available for the alien in the United States. DIXIT charged his clients higher than normal fees as he claimed he could obtain visas for those who would otherwise not be allowed to work in the United States. Evidence in court revealed that DIXIT assisted approximately 37 aliens in breaking the law through this scheme and earned one million dollars. For example, in one case, attorney DIXIT charged two aliens from India approximately $80,000 for his role in obtaining legal permanent resident status for them.
DIXIT was indicted on May 26, 2010, on 28 counts of visa fraud, 42 counts of alien harboring for the purpose of private financial gain, one count of conspiracy to commit visa fraud and one count of conspiracy to harbor aliens in violation of the law. Today DIXIT pleaded guilty to one count of conspiring to harbor aliens in violation of the law. He could receive a maximum sentence of ten years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. In determining the actual sentence, the Court will consider the United States Sentencing Guidelines, which are not binding but provide appropriate sentencing ranges for most offenders.
A sentencing date has not yet been scheduled before United States District Judge Julie E. Carnes.
This case is being investigated by Special Agents of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE-HSI) and the United States Department of Labor.
Assistant United States Attorneys Susan Coppedge and William L. McKinnon are prosecuting the case.
For further information please contact Sally Q. Yates, United States Attorney, or Charysse L. Alexander, Executive Assistant United States Attorney, through Patrick Crosby, Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Attorney's Office, at (404) 581-6016. The Internet address for the HomePage for the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Georgia is www.justice.gov/usao/gan.