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Friday, April 18, 2014

Woman in fake marriage found guilty

A federal jury has found a woman guilty of conspiring with a man and other persons to defraud U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services by engaging in a sham marriage.

After deliberating for a few hours, the 12 jurors reached a unanimous verdict finding Xiaoying Tang guilty of conspiracy to defraud the U.S., visa fraud, and false statement.

Tang will be sentenced on June 20, 2014. She was allowed to remain free until her sentencing date, under the same terms and conditions of her pre-trial release.

The trial began on Monday. Assistant U.S. attorneys Ross Naughton and Garth Backe, as counsel for the U.S. government, called in six witnesses and rested their case Tuesday afternoon.

Joseph Horrey, court-appointed counsel for Tang, allowed the defendant to testify on Tuesday afternoon. The defense did not call any other witnesses.

U.S. District Court for the NMI Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona presided over the case.

The indictment charged Tang and Jesse Juan Teigita Dowai with conspiracy to commit visa fraud and to defraud the U.S., visa fraud, and false statement.

Last Dec. 30, Dowai pleaded guilty to the conspiracy to commit visa fraud and to defraud the U.S. His sentencing will be on May 16, 2014.

Following Dowai’s guilty plea, the U.S. government then filed on Jan. 21 a first superseding indictment, charging Tang with three charges that she was found guilty of.

According to the charges, in September 2011, Dowai and Tang submitted Forms I-130 and I-485 respectively, containing false and fraudulent information and representations.

In February 2012, Tang made false statements to USCIS in support of her Form I-485.

On Sept. 28, 2011, Tang aided Dowai in falsely stating in his Form I-130 that they had “lived together” in Gualo Rai, Saipan from Oct. 1, 2009, to the “present.”

During an interview with Homeland Security Investigations special agents on March 22, 2013, Tang lied that, after marrying Dowai, she moved with him into an apartment in Garapan, where they lived for seven months.

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