December 13 2013 Latest news:
Thursday, September 5, 2013
A second Ipswich woman has been jailed in two days after becoming a sham ‘bride’ as part of a nationwide immigration scam.
Justyna Ignaczynska, of Norwich Road, was jailed for 12 months at Ipswich Crown Court.
The 27-year-old had previously pleaded guilty to facilitating a breach of the UK’s immigration laws.
Twenty-four hours earlier at the same court her housemate and fellow Lithuanian, Tatjana Stepanova-Tatanashvili, 34, was also imprisoned for a year after admitting the same offence.
Ignaczynska wed Amer Mohammed Abd el Rasoul in 2010 as part of the bogus marriage plot.
The women had been arrested on May 23 this year when the house they shared was raided by officers from the Home Office’s criminal and financial investigations team.
Chief Immigration Officer Kristie Roberts said: “Both Ignaczynska and Tatanashvili admitted that they had entered into fraudulent marriages with two Egyptian men.
Their motivation was purely financial, with the women each agreeing to enter into the weddings.
“This case sends a clear message that people who ignore immigration law do so at their peril. They will be caught and they will be brought to justice.”
At Stepanova-Tatanashvili’s sentencing it was said the sham marriages were part of a nationwide plot.
She married Walid Ahmed Elemezin on March 14, 2010, in an Islamic ceremony.
As a result of a widespread investigation a number of people have been arrested involving people higher up the chain. Stepanova-Tatanashvili was arrested in Ipswich when another conspirator’s mobile phone was checked following their arrest.
At her sentencing the court heard she was supposed to receive somewhere between £1,500 and £2,000 for marrying Elmezin.
However, it is understood that although Stepanova-Tatanashvili originally claimed she had not received any money she subsequently said she had been paid £500 of what was promised.
The UKBA have said a 32-year-old Egyptian man - understood to be Walid Ahmed Elemezin - has also been charged with conspiracy to facilitate a breach of the UK’s immigration laws in relation to the investigation.
His fellow Egyptian ‘groom’ Amer Mohammed Abd el Rasoul has yet to be traced.
Anyone who has information about suspected immigration crime can contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or visit www.crimestoppers-uk.org where anonymity can be assured.