While the U.S. State Department insists that adequate security measures are in place to properly vet all Middle Easterners being allowed into the U.S., a criminal network has been uncovered from across the globe that reveals serious breaches in the vetting process and could be a danger to the U.S. visa application system.
A Honduran newspaper, La Prensa, has reported that Syrians and Palestinians are buying illegal citizenship documents from officials in Honduras, then using those documents to try to get into the US on a visitor’s visa.
The Center for Immigration Studies reports (CIS) that Honduras’ National Registry of Persons (RNP) has confirmed that HUNDREDS of Palestinians, Syrians, and others from the Middle East have been fraudulently registered as Honduran citizens. This allows them to apply for Honduran passports, which in turn can be used to get visas to enter the U.S.
Authorities have denied some passport applications, as they can tell by the person’s language, accent and Arab features that they are NOT Honduran.
The report cited the case of a Palestinian man who, once he received his fake Honduran identity card and birth certificate, was then able to register at least 8 additional family members, including his wife, children and grandchildren.
The report quotes an official who confirmed that the fake ID criminal network operates from outside Honduras, and “they have people who know and have access to the system, as employees of the Registry have an assigned username to be able to modify part of the database.”
CIS said this raises an important question: “for each fraudulent application that is detected, how many get through? And for each Honduran passport issued, how many actually acquire a U.S. visa?” This presents yet another obstacle to the United States’ ability to properly vet individuals, says CIS.
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