Two Plead Guilty in Missouri Immigration Form Fraud
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) - Two Missouri men await sentencing after pleading guilty in a scheme to sell government immigration documents that were publicly available for free.
Forty-nine-year-old Thomas Strawbridge and 30-year-old Thomas Laurence pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and wire fraud. The charges were filed in connection with a former Sedalia-based company called Immigration Forms and Publications.
The U.S. Justice Department says the company fraudulently told consumers it was affiliated with the government and that fees helped cover government processing charges.
The company also allegedly told consumers that the forms it sold would be processed more quickly than if immigrants dealt directly with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Strawbridge and Laurence each face up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.