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Mar 13, 2005
No secret laws for US immigration consultants
- Atty. Michael Gurfinkel Email this article
Many people come to me, after having their case messed up by an immigration consultant. They tell me that some of these immigration consultants claimed that they know shortcuts, or “secret immigration laws” that only they have access to. They lure people into believing they can obtain green cards, even if the person is not qualified.

The Los Angeles Times recently reported that two such consultants, John Choe and Daniel Lee, made hundreds of thousands of dollars in the early ‘90s by collecting as much as $30,000 from each client to “expedite” the processing of the person’s green card application.

The two immigration consultants were indeed able to get quick “green cards” for hundreds of their clients.” What the clients did not know was that half of the amounts they paid went to bribes for an unscrupulous immigration supervisor, who later turned state witness and helped prosecute Choe and Lee when investigators closed in on them in 1998.

The poor, trusting clients had no idea their green cards were fraudulently obtained, and were thus “fake” green cards. One of the clients, a truck driver with a high school diploma, received a green card as a research professor. For more than 20 years, he led a normal life, thinking he was legal, until immigration officials discovered the fraud.

At least 24 of Choe and Lee’s clients have been either deported or have voluntarily left the U.S. The others are facing an uncertain future, hoping that a special legislation would be passed in congress that would grant them permanent residence.

These aliens were clearly victims of immigration fraud committed by unscrupulous immigration consultants and a corrupt immigration employee. However, they should have known better than to trust immigration consultants promising “fast and sure” green cards, that somehow bypass normal processing and waiting times.

Immigration consultants do not have access to, nor do they have knowledge of, any “secret laws” that would expedite anybody’s immigration applications. There are no “secret laws” in the first place. Nor do immigration consultants have a “secret” way to obtain fast and legitimate visas or green cards. Such “secrets” or shortcuts are often illegal and invalid.

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