27 Oct 2015

Filipino dual national charged over visa fraud

12:40 pm on 27 October 2015

A woman has been remanded on bail without plea after appearing in Hamilton District Court this morning on charges related to visa fraud.

The 35-year-old woman has been charged with obtaining a Work and Income labour market letter by deception from Queenstown Work and Income on 8 October last year for three employment vacancies with Maken Milk Dairy Farm in Invercargill, when only one vacancy had been authorised by the employer.

The woman who has dual Phillipines and New Zealand nationality is also charged with altering a Work and Income letter on the same date with the intent to deceive Immigration New Zealand in Manila, and using an altered Work and Income letter by giving it to another person.

The woman, who has been granted interim name suppression, was arrested last week in relation to a suspected fraud involving multiple work visa applications, submitted by Filipinos to work in the New Zealand dairy industry.

The maximum penalty for the charges range from seven to 10 years.

The woman will re-appear in court on 17 November when other immigration offences she is charged with are due to be heard.

The woman has been ordered to surrender her passport to the court, not to associate with individuals set out in her bail conditions and to report to police weekly.

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