The federal government has petitioned that four Somalis who falsely claimed to be a family should be stripped of their naturalization as citizens of the United States. The four were admitted to the country on Diversity Immigrant Visas, as was immigrant from Uzbekistan who allegedly killed eight persons in New York City on Halloween. The Department of Justice, Department of State, and the Department of Homeland Security have filed complaints in a federal court in Minnesota against the four Somalis who are alleged to have fraudulently obtained their naturalized U.S. citizenship.

According to the complaints, the purported husband, wife, and two sons— “unlawfully, knowingly, and fraudulently represented to immigration officials that they were a family to gain admission to the United States through the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program,” read a Justice Department statement. Each of them were naturalized due to fraudulent representations.

The DOJ statement quoted Attorney General Jeff Session: “For decades, the American people have begged and pleaded with their government for a lawful system of immigration that serves the national interest—a system that has as its foremost priorities their safety, their jobs, and their well-being.” Sessions added, “The current immigration system is easily abused by fraudsters and nefarious actors, and that’s certainly true of the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program. If the fraud is not detected and swift enforcement actions are not taken, chain migration only multiplies the consequences of this abuse. Unfortunately, there are many instances of fraud across our immigration system. The American people deserve a better system that works for them, and the Department of Justice will continue its efforts to deliver one to them.”

The cases are: United States v. Fosia Abdi Adan; United States v. Ahmed Mohamed Warsame; United States v. Mustaf Abdi Adan; and United States v. Faysal Jama Mire. The cases were investigated by Department of State’s Diplomatic Security Service (DSS), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) of the Department of Homeland Security.

“I previously taught civics classes, and saw firsthand how hard people work to come to the United States legally and honestly,” Acting Secretary Elaine Duke said. “They were so proud of their accomplishments. It is out of respect for those people that we cannot tolerate fraud, deception, and abuse of our legal immigration system. Fraudulently obtained citizenship is an affront to our American values, the rule of law, and all those who honestly attained their immigration status.”

A description of each of the four cases and the allegations of the United States are as follows as cited by the DOJ statement:

Fosia Abdi Adan

Fosia Abdi Adan, 51, a native of Somalia, applied for and received a diversity visa from the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, Yemen, under the Diversity Visa (DV) Program on Jan. 10, 2001, and used her visa to unlawfully obtain beneficiary visas for the below individuals who were ineligible to be beneficiaries. Adan arrived and was admitted to the United States on Jan. 29, 2001, on her diversity immigrant visa as a permanent resident. Throughout the diversity visa application process, Adan fraudulently claimed that she was married to Jama Solob Kayre, the fictitious identity used by Ahmed Mohamed Warsame, and that she and Kayre had three children together.  

"Such children included Mohamed Jama Solob, the fictitious identity used by Mustaf Abdi Adan, and Mobarak Jama Solob, the fictitious identity used by Faysal Jama Mire. Adan and Warsame, who used the fictitious identity of Jama Solob Kayre, obtained a divorce in Minnesota for their fictitious marriage after Adan was admitted as a permanent resident. Adan continued to fraudulently represent her previous fictitious marriage and fraudulently represent her fictitious parentage of Mohamed Jama Solob and Mobarak Jama Solob, throughout the naturalization process. Adan naturalized on Aug.16, 2006. Adan has been residing in Eden Prairie, Minnesota. Among other counts contained in the complaint filed against Adan, the United States alleges that she was not lawfully admitted for permanent residence because she engaged in alien smuggling as defined by the Immigration and Nationality Act, and thus was never eligible to naturalize."

 
Ahmed Mohamed Warsame

"Ahmed Mohamed Warsame aka Jama Solob Kayre, 54, a native of Somalia, using the fictitious identity of Jama Solob Kayre, applied for and received a beneficiary diversity visa as the fictitious spouse of Fosia Abdi Adan, the principal diversity visa immigrant of the fictitious family. Warsame unlawfully obtained his visa as the spouse of a diversity visa immigrant from the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, Yemen, under the DV Program on Jan. 10, 2001. Warsame arrived and was admitted to the United States on May 30, 2001, on his diversity immigrant visa as a permanent resident. Throughout the diversity visa application process, Warsame fraudulently claimed that he was married to Adan and that he and Adan had three children together.

"Such children included Mohamed Jama Solob, the fictitious identity used by Mustaf Abdi Adan, and Mobarak Jama Solob, the fictitious identity used by Faysal Jama Mire. Adan and Warsame, who used the fictitious identity of Jama Solob Kayre, obtained a divorce in Minnesota for their fictitious marriage after Warsame was admitted as a permanent resident. Warsame continued to fraudulently represent his previous fictitious marriage and fraudulently represent his fictitious parentage of Mohamed Jama Solob and Mobarak Jama Solob, throughout the naturalization process. Warsame, using the fictitious name of Jama Solob Kayre, naturalized on Sept. 13, 2006. During his naturalization, he changed his name to Ahmed Mohamed Warsame. Warsame has been residing in St. Cloud, Minnesota."

Mustaf Abdi Adan 

"Mustaf Abdi Adan aka Mohamed Jama Solob, 33, a native of Somalia, using the fictitious identity of Mohamed Jama Solob, applied for and received a beneficiary diversity visa as the fictitious child of Fosia Abdi Adan, the primary diversity visa immigrant of the fictitious family. Adan unlawfully obtained his visa as the child of a diversity visa immigrant from the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, Yemen, under the DV Program on Sept. 30, 2001. He arrived and was admitted to the United States on Dec. 9, 2001, on his beneficiary diversity immigrant visa as a permanent resident.

"Throughout the diversity visa application process, he fraudulently claimed that Fosia Abdi Adan was his mother and that Warsame, under the identity of Jama Solob Kayre, was his father. Mustaf Abdi Adan, using the fictitious name of Mohamed Jama Solob, naturalized on July 24, 2013, and at that time changed his name to Mustaf Abdi Adan. He has been residing in Minneapolis, Minnesota."
 
Faysal Jama Mire 

"Faysal Jama Mire aka Mobarak Jama Solob, 31, a native of Somalia, using the fictitious identity of Mobarak Jama Solob, applied for a beneficiary diversity visa as the fictitious child of Fosia Abdi Adan, the primary diversity visa immigrant. Mire unlawfully obtained his beneficiary visa as the child of a diversity visa immigrant from the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, Yemen, under the DV Program on Sept. 30, 2001. He arrived and was admitted to the United States on Dec. 9, 2001, on his beneficiary diversity immigrant visa as a permanent resident. Throughout the diversity visa application process, he fraudulently claimed that Fosia Abdi Adan was his mother and that Warsame, under the identity of Jama Solob Kayre, was his father. Faysal Jama Mire, using the fictitious name of Mobarak Jama Solob, naturalized on April 14, 2010, and at that time changed his name to Faysal Jama Mire. He has been residing in Hennepin County, Minnesota." 

Under the Immigration and Nationality Act, the citizenship of a naturalized U.S. citizen may be revoked, and his or her certificate of naturalization canceled, if such naturalization was illegally procured or procured by concealment of a material fact or by willful misrepresentation. Minnesota has the largest population of persons of Somali ancestry in the country, topping 32,000. Sub-Saharan African immigrants to Minnesota now number over 100,000. 

The Diversity Visa program allows 50,000 immigrants annually to jump ahead of other applicants for immigration. The program was part of immigration reform that was promoted by then-Rep. Chuck Schumer and signed into law by then-president George H. W. Bush. Sayfullo Saipov -- the immigrant from Uzbekistan who is accused of killing eight people and injuring 11 more on October 31 in New York City -- entering the U.S. through the program. President Donald Trump wants to eliminate the program.
 



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Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat and the editor of Spero News.

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