Foreign students and the fake marriage scam unearthed

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It is the Indian media that is reporting on a scam that has spawned a fake marriage industry involving would-be international students.

Here is how it works. Mostly parents of male students put out ads seeking a “spouse” with the promise that the foreign students’ sham marriage, plus all travel and study expenses, will be borne for by the Indian families who are determined to have their son or daughter emigrate.

In exchange for financing the foreign student, the phony spouse gets to live in Canada and legally work up to 40 hours a week, plus receive medical coverage and other benefits. That puts them in a strong position to become permanent residents of Canada.

The criteria laid down in the ads usually seeks out a teenage girl, who must have passed an English-language test and therefore be in line to be accepted as an international student.

Naturally then Canada is the top destination for such students and their ‘spouses’ as it is the almost guarantees all foreign students and their spouses permanent residency and ultimately citizenship.

Here is a typical recent ad from one Punjabi-language newspaper in India, Ajit: “Jatt Sikh, boy, 24 years old, 5 feet 10 inches, needs girl with IELTS band 7. Marriage real or fake. Boy’s side will pay all expenses.”

The ad is listed by a high-caste “Jatt” Sikh male, or more likely his parents. It seeks a contractual marriage with a young woman who has scored well (“band 7”) on an international exam called “IELTS,” the International English Language Testing System. Almost three million IELTS exams are conducted each year.

The problems arise in India when a student who has her education financed either cannot qualify to study or breaks up with their ‘spouse’, that is when the financiers of the fraud cry foul and want their money back.

The Indian fake marriage ads normally lead to on-paper marriages that occur weeks before the couple travel to Canada.

According to media reports and people in the know, this is a booming racket that involves hundreds of so-called foreign students and their fake spouses who enter Canada as couples, most of them are under 20. Canadian immigration laws allow the spouses to work 40 hours and in a few years become permanent residents of the country.

The fake marriages are then often dissolved and the two individuals can then bring over their real wives and husbands.

All this seems to be happening and Canada’s immigration laws are being compromised. – CINEWS

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