Woman Arrested on Charge of Marriage of Convenience

A woman is in Vancouver is facing Canada's first immigration-related bigamy charge in a British Columbia marriage-of-convenience scheme.

Jotika Ashni Reddy, 33, is blamed of marrying one man on Sep. 27, 2006 in the Vancouver community of Surrey and a next man on Jan. 26, 2008 in close Delta, while she was previously married to a third man.

Reddy then attempted to sponsor the two men which are foreign national, for permanent residency in Canada. Each of them submitted an application for permanent resident status on the foundation of the marriage.

Reddy is accused with two counts of bigamy and two counts of deliberately misrepresenting or preservation material facts in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. For the reason that immigration is a federal matter, the four charges are being put on trial in federal court. “It is the first time we've put down a charge of bigamy in Canada,” said Canada Border Services Agency spokesman Faith St. John.

Reddy's first wedding was registered in B.C. on April 26, 1997. Civil court papers in 2008 listed Reddy, a occupant of Edmonton, as a building upholding worker. She turned herself in to Canada Border Services Agency investigators in Surrey previous week after a warrant was issued for her detain.

Under Canadian immigration law, a Canadian citizen is free to sponsor his or her present legal spouse. Immigration policy political analyst Richard Kurland said it's exceptional for a marriage of convenience case to slide over into the scandalous justice system. “It turns on the credentials themselves,” said Kurland. “If the documents are in sequence, there is no defense.

“Your intention is trumped by the documents. You'll have a solid time explaining two marriages in 24 months in the similar jurisdiction with no separation proceedings.”

Reddy's next emergence is set for Federal Court in Surrey on Nov. 26.


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