Watertown Man Pleads Guilty To Marriage Fraud
CONTACT: Barbara Burns
PHONE: (716) 843-5817
FAX: (716) 551-3051
BUFFALO, N.Y.-U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. announced today that Jasvir Kumar, 45, of Watertown, NY, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit marriage fraud, before U.S. District Judge Arcara. The defendant was also sentenced to time served (seven months) in prison.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Carol G. Bridge, who handled the case, stated that Kumar, a native and citizen of India, came to the United States on a non-immigrant tourist visa on March 27, 2008. After overstaying his visa and remaining in the U.S. illegally, the defendant conspired with Suhkvinder Chhokar, a naturalized U.S. Citizen, also of Watertown, to marry a U.S. Citizen. This would allow Kumar to apply for lawful permanent resident status. Kumar and Chhokar paid the citizen $10,000.00 to get married and file the paperwork with U.S. Immigration Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
The defendant submitted staged photos and false affidavits to support his fraudulent marriage claim. When Kumar appeared with his “wife” in the Buffalo USCIS office on December 3, 2014 for a green card interview, his “wife” admitted to the fraudulent marriage. The defendant was immediately arrested and detained. Kumar was ordered deported from the U.S. at an immigration hearing on February 24, 2015.
Charges are pending against co-defendant Suhkvinder Chhokar. The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
The plea is the result of an investigation by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Fraud Detection and National Security Unit, under the direction of District Director Edward Newman and Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations, under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge J. Michael Kennedy.