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  1. #1
    Administrator Jean's Avatar
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    Bay Area businessman charged with high-tech worker visa fraud (update)

    Created on Friday, 29 March 2013 19:38
    Written by IVN

    San Jose, California - A Silicon Valley businessman made his initial appearance in federal court Thursday following his indictment on 19 counts of visa fraud.

    Balarkishan Patwardhan, 52, of Cupertino, is accused in an indictment filed March 27 with providing fraudulent immigration documents to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in support of employment visa petitions for 19 Indian nationals.

    The charges are the result of a probe by the U.S. Department of State Diplomatic Security Service's representative to the Document and Benefit Fraud Task Force, a multi-agency group headed by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). USCIS's Office of Fraud Detection and National Security also provided substantial assistance with the case.

    The allegations against Patwardhan involve the H-1B visa program which requires, among other things, that a U.S. employer certify it has jobs available that cannot be filled by Americans. The indictment alleges Patwardhan falsely represented to the government that the 19

    H-1B visa applicants had high technology job offers with an American employer, when he knew there were no job offers for those individuals.

    Patwardhan was released from custody on a $50,000 bond, with one of the conditions being that he not provide consulting services for technology companies or provide any visa services.

    Patwardhan's next scheduled court appearance is April 22 before U.S. District Judge Edward J. Davila. The maximum statutory penalty for visa fraud is 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

    Bay Area businessman charged with high-tech worker visa fraud
    Last edited by Jean; 04-01-2014 at 10:51 PM.
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  2. #2
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    Bay Area businessman pleads guilty in high-tech worker visa fraud scam

    Created on Tuesday, 01 April 2014 19:05
    Written by ICE

    San Jose, California - A Bay Area businessman pleaded guilty in federal court Monday to multiple counts of visa fraud admitting he submitted employment visa applications on behalf of 19 foreign high-tech workers he falsely claimed had jobs lined up with an area biotech firm.

    Balakrishnan Patwardhan, 53, of Cupertino, admitted that, between July 2008 and October 2010, he knowingly submitted false immigration forms and supporting documentation to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services seeking high-tech worker visas for 19 applicants. Patwardhan claimed the individuals had job offers with Gilead Sciences in Foster City, though he knew the firm did not have positions for the applicants. Patwardhan also admitted he had included altered contracts and created false statements of work as part of the visa fraud scam.

    The case is the result of a probe led by the U.S. Department of State Diplomatic Security Service's representative to the Document and Benefit Fraud Task Force (DBFTF), which is overseen by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations.

    Patwardhan was indicted in March 2013. As part of his plea, Patwardhan agreed to forfeit $100,000 in proceeds he obtained from the fraud scheme. He has been free on $50,000 bond since his arrest last March. As a condition of his release, Patwardhan was barred from providing consulting services for technology companies or any visa services.

    Patwardhan's sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 18 before U.S. District Judge Edward J. Davila in San Jose. The maximum statutory penalty for visa fraud is 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

    The prosecution was handled by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of California. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joseph Fazioli and Jeff Nedrow are prosecuting the case, aided by Legal Assistants Laurie Worthen and Susan Kreider.

    The DBFTF is a multi-agency task force that coordinates investigations involving fraudulent immigration documents. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service's Office of Fraud Detection and National Security also assisted with the case.

    http://www.imperialvalleynews.com/in...raud-scam.html
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