Indian-origin adviser on UK visas banned, fined
Patel, operating out of offices in West London in 2015, made Tier 2 visa applications for at least 16 complainants using a fake Certificate of Sponsorship.Updated: Jun 29, 2017 20:39 IST
Alpesh Patel, a London-based immigration adviser, has been banned indefinitely by the Office of the Immigration Service Commissioner, after 60 charges of irregularities were proved against him, including providing false papers to clients in order to obtain visas.
OISC — the regulating body of the immigration advice industry — said that Patel, operating out of offices in West London in 2015, made Tier 2 visa applications for at least 16 complainants using a fake Certificate of Sponsorship.
He acted as an immigration adviser and recruitment consultant, introducing the complainants to companies that he claimed could provide them with employment and a Certificate of Sponsorship to allow them to remain in the country.
In each case, Patel charged between £3,300 and £13,000, usually demanding payment in cash.
After the charges were proved, Patel’s OISC registration was cancelled and he has been asked to repay £172,600 to complainants. He has also been fined £7,460.
“There was no legitimate recruiting company. There were no real jobs. There were no genuine Certificates of Sponsorship. On each occasion, the complainant’s Tier 2 application was refused by the Home Office, because the purported Certificate of Sponsorship was a fake. Each complainant lost thousands of pounds,” the OISC said in a release.
An OISC tribunal found the conduct of Patel to be “reprehensible” and held that he had played a major role in deception.
It noted that Patel “has sought, serially, to deceive the Commissioner, and the immigration authorities, and to abuse the material immigration procedures, and has deceived all of those clients whose immigration affairs are the subject of these proceedings and in respect of whom the aforesaid sixty charges have been upheld, and dishonestly deprived each of them of a substantial amount of money.”
Deputy immigration services commissioner Ian Leigh said: “Alpesh Patel was entrusted to advise vulnerable people who could not handle their immigration cases on their own… they trusted him and he betrayed that trust by his reprehensible conduct. I am delighted with the outcome in this case.”
First Published: Jun 29, 2017 20:39 IST