fbpx Massachusetts Man Pleads Guilty to Tax Scheme Targeting Congolese Immigrants in Boston - Documented

Massachusetts Man Pleads Guilty to Tax Scheme Targeting Congolese Immigrants in Boston

Plus: 3 men sentenced to prison for conspiring to bring workers from Central America for forced labor

Fisayo Okare

Apr 05, 2022

The Thurgood Marshall United States Courthouse in lower Manhattan. Max Siegelbaum for Documented

This summary was featured in Documented’s Early Arrival newsletter. You can subscribe to receive it in your inbox three times per week here.

Boris Shadari, 46, pleaded guilty to fraudulently posing as a tax professional and falsely inflating the federal income tax refunds of his clients — Congolese immigrants in greater Boston — for his own gain. Shadari pleaded guilty in Boston federal court to a range of charges including conspiracy to defraud the U.S., filing a false tax return, aggravated identity theft and witness tampering. He is expected to be sentenced in July, and his co-conspirator, Christian Zynga, who already pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud, will be sentenced in June. U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts Rachael Rollins said in a statement that Shadari is a member of the Congolese community but “grossly exploited hardworking, vulnerable” people who believed him to be trustworthy. AP News

In other federal immigration news…

3 men sentenced to prison for conspiring to bring workers from Central America for forced labor

Three men from Georgia have been sentenced to federal prison for conspiring to bring workers from Central America to the U.S. for forced labor on south Georgia farms. The farm workers were brought into the U.S. on the H-2A agricultural visa program and then the men profited from their work by underpaying them and forcing them to live in substandard conditions. “These men engaged in facilitating modern-day slavery,” U.S. Attorney David Estes said in a news release. “Our law enforcement partners have exposed an underworld of human trafficking, and we will continue to identify and bring to justice those who would exploit others whose labors provide the fuel for their greed.” AP News

L.A. paralegal to plead guilty to helping Philippines-based church commit immigration fraud

Maria De Leon, 73, a paralegal in Los Angeles, could be sentenced to up to five years in federal prison for helping a Philippines-based church to commit immigration fraud by setting up false marriages. Federal prosecutors said in court documents that victims of the fraud were forced to solicit donations in the U.S. to finance the lavish lifestyle of leaders in the church. De Leon signed a plea deal and agreed to work with the federal government against the church’s administrators, including its founder, Apollo Carreon Quiboloy, who was indicted in November on charges of sexually abusing women and underage girls by threatening them with abuse and “eternal damnation.” AP News

Center for Migrant Rights urges U.S. government to toughen protections for women in temporary work programs

An advocacy group for Mexican women who face discrimination and sexual harassment in temporary work programs for migrants are urging the U.S. government to take stronger action against it. The Center for Migrant Rights says the U.S. and Mexican governments’ efforts to address a petition filed on the issue, in 2021, has not gone far enough. The petition urged Mexico to pursue remedies with U.S. authorities under the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, which has stricter labor provisions than the trade pact it replaced in 2020. Reuters

Fisayo Okare

Fisayo writes Documented’s "Early Arrival" newsletter and "Our City" column. She is an MSc. graduate of Columbia Journalism School, New York, and earned her BSc. degree in Mass Comm. from Pan-Atlantic University, Lagos.

@fisvyo

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