Afghanistan Citizen Pleads Guilty to Immigration Fraud Charges
PHILADELPHIA—Hayatullah Dawari, 62, of Philadelphia, PA, pleaded guilty today to two counts of immigration fraud and was sentenced to two years in prison, which U.S. District Court Judge Stewart Dalzell suspended for immediate deportation.
Dawari is an Afghanistan citizen who became a lawful permanent resident of the United States on or about November 11, 2008, and who applied for U.S. citizenship in November 2013. In his application for U.S. citizenship, Dawari answered “No” to question 8a: “Have you ever been a member of or associated with any organization, association, fund, foundation, party, club, society, or similar group in the United States or in any other place?” Dawari admitted today in court that his answer to question 8a was false, in that it failed to disclose his prior relationship with Hezb-e-Islami Gulbuddin (“HIG”), an anti-western insurgent group active in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
As part of Dawari’s guilty plea, the parties stipulated that he would be sentenced to a two-year sentence of imprisonment, suspended, accompanied by an order requiring the defendant’s transfer without undue delay into immigration custody for uncontested removal from the United States. The defendant also agreed to relinquish his status as a lawful permanent resident, and he is now rendered permanently inadmissible to the United States.
The case was investigated by Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Joint Terrorism Task Force, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and the Philadelphia Police Department. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams.