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Queens Chronicle

Woman faces trial for defrauding immigrant

Richmond Hill resident allegedly told man she was an immigration lawyer

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Posted: Thursday, June 6, 2013 10:30 am | Updated: 10:41 am, Thu Jun 13, 2013.

According to the charges filed by Queens District Attorney Richard Brown, the immigrant, Kuldip Ramkhellawan, met Maraj at her South Richmond Hill office on Aug. 20, and Maraj represented to him that she was an immigration attorney. It is alleged that during the meeting, Ramkhellawan gave the defendant $2,000 in cash, two passport photos of himself and his genuine Trinidadian passport in exchange for helping him obtain a legitimate Social Security card and a legitimate permanent resident card or “green card.”

Maraj then allegedly met Ramkhellawan in Queens on Aug. 23, and brought him to 1 Police Plaza in Manhattan, where Ramkhellawan had his fingerprints taken at the NYPD’s Public Inquiry Office, which processes applicants for Certificates of Conduct (formerly known as a Good Conduct Certificate), which are criminal history searches within the environs of New York City, indicating whether an applicant has a criminal history.

Thereafter, Ramkhellawan allegedly met Maraj at 26 Federal Plaza in Manhattan on Sept. 11, and filled out an immigration form. Around this time, Maraj allegedly returned Ramkhellawan’s Trinidadian passport to him, which now had a red stamp allegedly from the Department of Homeland Security and an alien number handwritten next to the stamp.

On Sept. 16, Ramkhellawan allegedly gave Maraj an additional $4,000 in cash and she gave him a receipt for the payment. It is further alleged that Ramkhellawan received a brown envelope between September 16 and Nov. 15, containing a Social Security card and a permanent resident card bearing his name and date of birth.

Finally, on Nov. 15, Ramkhellawan allegedly went to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles office at 168-35 Rockaway Blvd. in Springfield Gardens and provided his Trinidadian passport, Social Security card, permanent resident card and a genuine Massachusetts driver’s license and filled out an application for a New York State driver’s license.

However, according to the complaint, a DMV investigator determined that the Department of Homeland Security stamp on Ramkhellawan’s Trinidadian passport was fraudulent in that the stamp did not match any stamps used by Homeland Security; the Social Security card was fraudulent, in that it did not have a work authorization indicator on the front and that the font on the card was different from the font used by the Social Security Administration; and that the permanent resident card was fraudulent in that the card lacked certain security features — such as there was a hologram, the font was incorrect and the format of the script on the bottom portion of the card was incorrect.

Maraj faces up to seven years in prison if convicted, was ordered held on $250,000 bail and must return to court on June 11.

Brown said that anyone who believes that he or she may have been a victim of the defendant’s alleged scheme to contact his Economics Crimes Bureau at (718) 286-6673.

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