Alleged immigration fraudster Dr Hansen pleads not guilty, will appear in court tomorrow

Tongan man Dr Hilamani Hansen, 63, will appear in a Sacramento court in California tomorrow on 12 counts of fraud and one count of conspiracy in connection with an immigration scam.

Dr Hansen who is currently in a Sacramento jail cell, maintained his innocence and claimed he was someone who worked tirelessly to help immigrants achieve their dreams.

He was arrested Thursday last week after about more than a year of FBI and Department of Homeland Security agent’s investigation.

It has been revealed Dr Hansen “lied to the FBI agents” that “hundreds” of immigrants had become citizens through his adult adoption mechanism.

He said he lied because of his “belief and the things that sit in my heart; it’s going to work.”

Dr Hansen however entered a plea of not guilty Friday and is scheduled to be in court Wednesday 17 seeking bail.

FBI believed Dr Hansen was one of “an unknown number of thus-far-uncharged co-conspirators” who were “inducing more than 500 victims from coast to coast to pay a total of more than $500,000 in order to secure a status that will would relieve them of the fear of deportation”.

US authority claimed this was “the first and only such prosecution in the nation” and “none of the victims of the scam gained citizenship”.

The not-for-profit organisation aims “to aid, direct, educate and to assist the (immigrant) communities with available resources and information in their daily struggle in this great country of ours,” announces one of his several websites. On another site, he describes himself as “driven by a deep relationship with God, love for the disenfranchised and undocumented international citizens of the world.

An affidavit showed  Hansen said “hundreds” of immigrants had become citizens through his adult adoption mechanism. Later, he admitted he lied to the agents about that and further admitted he had lied to prospective customers on that same point. The affidavit says he told the agents they were “dead right,” that “zero” immigrants had attained citizenship through him. He said he lied because of his “belief and the things that sit in my heart; it’s going to work.”

According to the Sacrament Bee report, “The 82-page affidavit, sworn to by FBI Special Agent Brady Cowan, reports that the search yielded paper and electronic documents and records concerning the “adult-adoption-to-citizenship scheme.”

“The seized material includes “files relating to victims of the scheme that contain identity information, payment records, adult adoption petitions, delayed birth certificates, evidence of mail and wire transactions, and other evidence of the operation.”

“Hansen’s organization was repeatedly successful in acquiring adult adoptions in Sacramento and Alameda Superior Courts until judges in both jurisdictions recognized obvious signs that the adoptions were not in the legitimate interests of the immigrants, according to the affidavit”.

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