Green Card Hoax Emails at All Time High
A recent spate of hoax emails regarding Green Card lotteries have resulted in a number of horror stories. Consequently the American Immigration Lawyers Association have issued a warning against the pitfalls of these emails. With the demand for a Green Card at an all time high, competition to win one of them is incredibly fierce. Unfortunately con-men and scam artists are taking advantage of the desperation of the applicants using emails to try and swindle them.
These emails purportedly come from the US State Department and claim that the recipient has won the visa lottery. In turn they ask for money: $749 for a single person and $949 for families. Nothing contained in the email is true. The hapless victims who believe that have won the right to a Green Card pay the money and never see or hear from the ones sending the email and definitely do not see anything in return for the money. The money is gone and so is their dignity.
ALIA has been at pains to spread the message of these hoax emails as widely as possible to prevent anyone else falling victim to it. If a person has actually won the Green Card lottery they will receive something by registered mail and not email. Additionally no money will be asked for.
This is the latest scam in a long list which tries to take advantage of those who are desperately wanting a Green Card. Other scams involve a person claiming to be affiliate to the US government, offer special assistance in the Green Card Lottery and can increase an applicant’s chances of being successful in the lottery.
Unfortunately most of these scams pray on victims who aren’t as educated or don’t speak English so well if at all. Thus being the case they would be prone to being easily confused between what is genuine and what isn’t.
The US Government is angry about what is going on and has taken measures to come down hard on the people perpetrating these crimes. They will have their possessions confiscated as well as being sent to prison for lengthy amounts of time with no chance of parole.
There was a couple in Florida who were running websites which claimed to be affiliated with the State Department. The websites yielded over $5 million for the con artists but they were caught and have now lost everything. Their waterfront mansion home, Jaguar car and jewelry were all sold off with the proceeds going towards paying back their victims. Additionally they were sentenced to three years in a maximum security prison.
The FBI is also playing its part with agents acting undercover as immigrants applying for a Green Card. They play along with the scam and then catch the criminal in the act.