A California man was sentenced Dec. 18 to three years in prison and ordered to forfeit $1.2 million for visa fraud and aggravated identity theft.
A federal jury in San Francisco convicted Abhijit Prasad, 52, of Tracy, California, on Aug. 5 of 19 counts of visa fraud, two counts of fraudulent obtainment of foreign visas and two counts of aggravated identity theft. He could have faced 12 years in prison.
According to the US Attorney’s Office, Prasad filed 19 petitions for H-1B nonimmigrant visas containing false statements — made under penalty of perjury — as to purported work projects to be performed at locations in California, including at Cisco Systems. The defendant submitted forged Cisco documents to US Citizenship and Immigration Services in support of his claims that the H-1B beneficiaries would work at Cisco. However, Cisco had no expectation that the foreign workers who were the beneficiaries of the visa petitions would actually work at Cisco on an existing work project, the US Attorney’s office said.