A former Albany company director responsible for a $100,000 immigration scam has been sentenced to home detention and community work at Auckland District Court.
Tengyu (Nick) Yuan, of Noahark Consultant Ltd, faced six counts of providing immigration advice without being licensed or exempt.
The court heard that migrants had approached Noahark for immigration advice after reading adverts in Chinese newspapers.
Adverts promised specialist help for overstayers, family reunion, work visas and difficult cases.
They met Mr Yuan at his ASB building office in Albert St, or near his Albany home where he made several claims including that:
He worked with an immigration officer at Immigration New Zealand
He was talking to the assistant Minister of Immigration about their case
He had a 100 per cent success rate and there was a new immigration policy that would allow them to gain a residence visa
They would be refunded if the visa application was unsuccessful.
Migrants paid large sums in cash only to find out that Mr Yuan had completed little or no work.
In total, Mr Yuan was paid more than $103,000 by six migrants.
Mr Yuan, 36, admitted all charges following an investigation led by the Immigration Advisers Authority.
On sentencing, Judge Mathers said: "Some people may consider this as a white collar crime but, as others have said, you are no better than a common criminal."
Mr Yuan was sentenced to 10 months home detention, 300 hours community work and post-detention conditions to continue for 12 months.
"These migrants trusted Mr Yuan," Registrar of Immigration Advisers Barry Smedts says.
"We urge migrants to look closer and check whether the person giving them immigration advice is a licensed immigration adviser or exempt."
Exempt persons include New Zealand lawyers who can be found at the website lawsociety.org.nz.
Call the authority on 0508 422 422 for more information.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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