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Vulnerable women coerced to marry in visa fraud

Australian Border Force
Date published
November 2018

Relevant impacts: Human impact, Financial impact and Government outcomes impact.

A group has been charged with allegedly convincing vulnerable people to fraudulently marry non-citizens that were seeking to obtain permanent residency in Australia.

This type of scam generally targets vulnerable young women who come from disadvantaged and low socio-economic backgrounds. The non-citizens generally pay a significant sum of money to a facilitator in an attempt to enter or stay in Australia.

"Many of the women involved in these scams have suffered a history of substance abuse, family violence and financial hardship, and are lured in with promises of substantial payments," Acting Investigations Commander Clinton Sims said.

The Australian Border Force operation that uncovered the group also resulted in 164 partner visa applications being refused after they were found to be linked to the group. All of those in the group have been charged with a number of offences under the Migration Act and the Criminal Code. The maximum penalty is a fine up to $210,000 and/or 10 years in prison.

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