by Kaylee Greenlee
A Nevada woman was arrested and charged in connection with a scheme spanning several years to commit fraud and launder money to smuggle Chinese nationals into the U.S, the Department of Justice announced Wednesday.
Haiyan Liao, 43, was charged with conspiracy to commit visa fraud, money laundering conspiracy and to illegally smuggle Chinese nationals into the U.S. for financial gain, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ).
“As alleged in the indictment, Liao aided and abetted aliens who paid thousands of dollars for her fraudulent immigration services,” Acting U.S. of the Eastern District of New York Attorney Seth D. DuCharme said in a statement.
“The defendant provided fake documents and coached her accomplices regarding how to lie during visa interviews and customs checks. Our office and our law enforcement agency partners remain vigilant and committed to protecting the integrity of the immigration process and our border security and preventing criminals from seeking profit in the subversion of the rule of law,” DuCharme added.
— KSNV News 3 Las Vegas (@News3LV) January 13, 2021
Liao is charged with submitting false information to obtain visitors visas to the U.S. Consulate in Guangzhou, China, as part of a money-laundering scheme, according to the DOJ.
“This defendant, however, is charged with submitting false applications for visitor visas to the U.S. Consulate in Guangzhou and engaging in money laundering as part of a multi-year alien smuggling business that brought Chinese nationals into the United States illegally,” Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division David P. Burns said in a statement.
“This indictment underscores that those who seek to thwart our system of legal immigration to line their own pockets will be prosecuted,” Burns added.
Liao made the travel arrangements for the illegal immigrants whose visas were approved and even accompanied them on flights to New York, according to the DOJ. The illegal immigrants paid thousands of dollars for the visas.
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Kaylee Greenlee is a reporter for the Daily Caller News Foundation.