How far are illegal immigrants willing to go to remain in the United States? Sneaking into the country by climbing walls, paying smugglers to get them across the border, and other methods of getting into the U.S. are only just the beginning. The next obstacle is finding a way to remain, and it appears there’s a growing trend of aliens claiming to be victims of fake crimes in order to obtain a U visa.
The U visa is meant to protect undocumented aliens after witnessing or being a victim of a crime to help them achieve a green card and eventually citizenship. However, as Liberty Nation recently reported, elaborate schemes claiming non-existent crimes are on the rise. Earlier this month near Seattle, WA, ten people were allegedly involved in a hoax to gain these visas, claiming armed assailants came into the burger restaurant, tied up the patrons and employees, and sexually assaulted two women. Now, another case of crying wolf seems to have appeared, this time in Minnesota.
Four illegal immigrants paid a total of $5,000, according to reports, to Yuridia Hernandez Linares, 36, to get information on how to defraud the system and obtain U visas. Linares, who has already duped the system and obtained one of the coveted visas in 2016, walked them through her proven strategy.
The immigrants claimed to have been robbed or assaulted and had the cuts on their bodies (from box cutters or other sharp objects) to prove it. On Aug. 20, a man and woman reported that two men had come up to them brandishing a knife while they were walking on a trail. The male said his wallet was stolen while the woman claimed she had been grabbed by the throat and her purse pilfered. Both said they had been cut by a knife.
On Aug. 30, just ten days later, two females told authorities that they had gone to Linares’ residence, but then walked to a nearby McDonald’s when they discovered she wasn’t home. Allegedly, two men came up to the women from behind, stealing their purses, and then cutting them both before escaping.
While investigating the reported crimes, Eden Prairie police found too many similarities including reports from Linares’ previous claim that earned her a U visa. In Oct. 2015, Linares and a friend stated they had been robbed by two men at knifepoint. In March 2016, she requested a U visa for her suffering and the police chief signed off on the request.
Linares has been charged with one count of felony theft by swindle because of the money she accepted from the illegal immigrants. She is being held at the Hennepin County jail. In a statement, Police Chief Greg Weber said the three robberies did not occur: Oct. 2015, Aug. 10, 2019, and Aug. 20, 2019.
The charges brought against Linares explain what led authorities to believe the robberies were faked:
“All the wounds were clean and superficial cuts of approximately same length and each victim sustained only one injury. None of the wounds were puncture wounds.”
“[The victims] told police officers they were afraid of Defendant and immigration,” said the charges. “Defendant had told them that if they told anyone, they would all go to jail.”
Foreign nationals are looking for ways to obtain legal status in the U.S. and are using illegal methods to do so. The validity of providing U visas is coming under scrutiny because the trend of claiming victimhood to clear the path to citizenship is escalating. The lure of legitimacy might just be too great to resist for some, especially if all one has to do is claim to be a victim of a crime.
Read more from Kelli Ballard.