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US probing another visa racket at embassy in Guyana

US Embassy, Georgetown, Guyana. US Embassy, Georgetown, Guyana.

The United States (US) is probing another visa racket allegedly involving another Consular Officer, the State Department has confirmed.

“The Department of State is aware of allegations of improprieties relating to a Consular Officer formerly assigned to Georgetown, Guyana,” according to a statement issued through the embassy here.

The State Department did not provide specifics of the allegation or the probe but stressed that the claims against the officer were being taken seriously and anyone found culpable would be penalised.

“The Department takes all allegations of misconduct by employees seriously. We are reviewing the matter thoroughly.  If the allegations are substantiated, we will work with the relevant authorities to hold anyone involved accountable,” the State Department added.

Well-placed sources said the Consular Officer was taken into the custody of federal agents several weeks ago immediately on his arrival for work inside the embassy compound.

He is currently in Falls Church, Virginia, USA pending the outcome of the investigation.

The officer was said to have frequented Hibiscus Restaurant, Middle Street, Georgetown where a number of visa deals were sealed prior to the applicants’ arrival at the embassy.

Demerara Waves Online News (www.demwaves.com) was told that visas were sold for as much as US$40,000 plus sex.

A number of sources believed that the Officer began the visa racket shortly after arriving in July 2011. His tour of duty should have ended in September 2013 but that ended prematurely as a result of the probe.

While here, the US staff member had travelled to the Corentyne and had been seen in the company of shady characters. He had also travelled to neighbouring Suriname believed to be a ready source of Chinese aliens travelling from The Netherlands to Venezeula with the aim of ending up in the US.

The Consular Officer was also said to have been an associate of Imtiaz Roopnarine who was gunned down on January 24 while leaving the Cool Square Guest House, West Ruimveldt.

If the US government’s probe finds the claims to be factual, it would be the second time in 13 years that a US Consular Officer here in Georgetown would have sold visas.

The first was in March 2000 when then Consular Officer Thomas Carroll was arrested for selling at least 800 visas for entry into the US for between US$10,000 and US$15,000 each.

He pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the United States Government, issuing false visa documents and bribing an official and was sentenced to 21 years imprisonment by a Federal Court in Chicago, Illinois. The sentence was later reduced after he appealed.

Guyanese Halim Khan, now a key figure in the Guyana-Cuba Friendship Society, was also sentenced to 38 months jail for his role in procuring visa-buyers.

Several Guyanese policemen were used as enforcers in the Carroll visa racket.

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0 #46 patricia 2013-11-13 00:10
I think they should revoke those visas. Cause their is lots of honest people out there who willing to come visit family and wasn't granted a visa. Also embassy official needs to check on assets clients apply with.they sometimes use someone address and information unknowingly here to apply. There is someone who uses an ex spouse income and name to obtain a us visa.n got 10 years. Those visa need s to be revoke as early as possible, also official need to contact US relatives to make sure they approve the welcome. Young people who don't need one is getting. I recently thought visa was giving away in guyana.
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+1 #45 G/T Times 2013-08-03 20:49
Well no Dirty deeds goes unpaid,what you sow that you will Reap.Jail will be his best Bet.
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+1 #44 Pam Shaw 2013-07-19 10:30
The US Embassy should revoke all the Illegal Visas, the ones that was paid for through (Bribery, Sex ) Visas which did not go through the right channels, and was given to the wrong kind of people.
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0 #43 ashti pollard 2013-07-18 12:47
would they not give people visa anymore i mean they ones who apply
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+1 #42 anthony sarjoo 2013-07-07 07:15
i met edy duran about a year ago , all the stuff in the news is not true , he hang out in hibiscus most of the time just to drink and have fun, i know most of the people he hang uot with are decent people , he met a few rifraf wile drinking and they will buy him a drink an he my buy back a drink, well you must understand how guyanese like to know embassy poeple ,that does not mean he dion visa deal maybe he help a few friends get visa ,buy not for money ok,,,what i think hapen he had some jealous girl friends who might have blackmail him ,, ican assured the news that he is not a guy like that and would not be charged here is my mumber if you need more info 656 3080
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+2 #41 Pam Shaw 2013-07-05 22:00
I would support the US Embassy be moved to another place of their choice.Allowing visas to procedd through thr right channels.....aw ay from Guyana.......Al so a lot of Guyanese steal from family members who trusted them with their money and property, so Guyanese (some) would go to any extent to get hat Visa money $40.000.00 US, and I hope they revoke all those Visas....I know of few of them who defrauded their families of their money and vehicle to get that visa, and hope they all go to jail, be the change you want to see in others.
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+2 #40 FREDERICK DOUGLAS 2013-07-05 17:10
Gusta this little neophite was so low on the US Government totem pole no one could notice him. Therefore that is no reflextion on the Obama administration. Your stupid statement is just a bunch of horse manure if you knew anything about the US governmental structure. Now if you want to see real government corruption just take a look in your own backyard where it is done so blatantly even Ray Charles could see it. Now your ignorance is showing !! In case you did not notice, the ordinary guyanese could not pay $40,000. for a visa so we all know who has that kind of cheese to spend. And it should not surprise anyone anyways.
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0 #39 noseyparker 2013-07-05 16:48
Well, well, not strange at all my hard working brother who owns two houses, a car and is married was turned due to NOT SUFFICIENT ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL TIES...didn't get the visa. Myself and another media colleague "turned down" the same day just weeks before Thomas Carroll was arrested...gues s what???? We are both living happily abroad NOT in the USA.
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+2 #38 Raffeeq Bacchus 2013-07-05 11:14
This is an ongoing problem in GUY and taints the good name of other US Consular Officers. How many of you remember the name Munoz back in the late 70's?
The economic and offensive blatant corruption creates the environment to flee GUY at any cost for those who have connections and can afford to pay for the escape route. Its sad!!
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+1 #37 Ricko 2013-07-05 09:35
The only solution to this (unfortunately) is to relocate the US embassy to another country. Guyana is too corrupt - and there is still denial on the part of the government.
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+3 #36 Darlington 2013-07-04 15:35
THAT IS ONLY ONE MANY MORE TO GO
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+1 #35 Darlington 2013-07-04 15:31
HE is selling because people in Guyana want to get out so bad .that non amount of money is to much people are so much afraid to pay the right way and get no for and answer u know how many people only kneed one Mounth out of Guyana
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-2 #34 Lantos 2013-07-04 13:20
Now the USA ambassador can shut his mouth about Guyana and focus on his job. Speaker Troman broke every constitutions rule and he didn't say S#!T about it. Where is the democracy USA Ambassador.
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-2 #33 Lantos 2013-07-04 13:17
Instead of Guyanese blame the USA Embassy them blaming Barrath for this typical Guyanese got nothing to do but talk names all day.
No body forced the White man to take the money.
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+5 #32 PPPhorseman 2013-07-04 11:01
if de fbi do dem wuk right this could be a maja shake up in gt,,all dem man Ed gat runnins wid is dem cocaine collieman,,,ove 25 a dem....big chance to clean up gt [censored] now...lew we see
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+4 #31 Rosignol 2013-07-04 10:49
So far, a majority of South American Countries and at least one Caribbean Country have spoken out against the insult to Morales and Ecuador. Guyana, which straddles South America and the Caribbean has been silent. Why?
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0 #30 Rosignol 2013-07-04 10:40
How you "gon" stop Guyanese? Given an opening, we will even corrupt the deities.
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+2 #29 rollonrolloff 2013-07-04 10:22
The fed should investigate those business men all so and charge them for Corruption and forfeit their asset here and overseas too. GUYANESE BUSINESSMEN IN NY IS ALL IN FRAUDULENT BUSINESS LIKE LOAN,REAL ESTATE, INSURANCE ETC ,NOW IS VISA . IN GUYANA THE INVESTIGATION IS POOR FROM TOP TO BOTTOM..
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-2 #28 Lantos 2013-07-04 10:02
Here we have an American encouraging corruption by taking bribes......... America need to clean them own house first then talk about other countries.
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+4 #27 kahani 2013-07-04 09:14
if them used to give guyanese ppl the visa easily the would have never gotten no bribery but when u go 4 a visa the turn u down.newhere u go and ppl gave u a hardtyme the money got 2 pass so y u callin it corruption.mone y got 2 make in this country.gave the guyanaese ppl visa easy n nun coruption wouldn tb here
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+8 #26 just cool 2013-07-04 03:59
Rock..... official in the US when found guilty of corruption are punished. In guyana no one is ever punished for corruption as long ss they are connected.
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+11 #25 just cool 2013-07-04 03:54
Rock.......corr uption exists in the US but when officials are caught they are brought to justice, regardless of their standing. In guyana no one gets brought to justice as long as you're connected.
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+7 #24 PPPhorseman 2013-07-03 23:00
sporting theifing money every day,,,dem should lack up hibiscus bass man too, he a part of the lawlesness [censored] that going awn deh too
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+4 #23 PPPhorseman 2013-07-03 22:59
Let it be know that these fools who work at the embassy all over the world are just workers, all they have is a good job, these are ordinary poor people who use their position and office to their advantage.....h e is just another joker who has been caught, hope he squeals and sings...this man is involved in the drug runnings/ money laundering....h e come heh and think he is gad,,,,jail he [censored] good and all those who were involved and throw away de [censored]ing key...GUILTY ,,,,do the crime now do the [censored]ing time ....revoke all the visas who pass thru this crimminals hands....do it and do it now...this is just the tip of the iceburg,,,FBI invalve, no runnings and paying off of hand to mouth gt policaman....
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+4 #22 things fall apart 2013-07-03 22:36
I appreciate the fact that a probe is actually going on and no one is attempting to cover up or deny. I hope Guyana could take a page from the USA's book
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+7 #21 punk 2013-07-03 21:07
Typical Guyanese!!!!!!!!!
There was allegations - he is not on the job.
If the outcome is guilty - then see what will be the PENALTY.
Now sit back and figure out what is different between the US and Guyana.
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-2 #20 Hinds in USA 2013-07-03 20:27
New York News
A high-ranking Democratic New York State senator was arrested on Tuesday and charged with trying to buy a place on the Republican ticket in the city's mayoral race, in what prosecutors said was part of a bribery scandal that reflected pervasive corruption in New York politics.
Five other politicians, three Republicans and two Democrats, were also arrested and charged with collectively accepting more than $100,000 in bribes in meetings that often took place in parked cars, hotel rooms and state offices, according to court papers.
Authorities described the scheme - potentially one of the biggest political scandals to hit New York in years - as an attempt to game the city's first wide-open mayoral election in more than a decade.

THERE ARE MORE CORRUPTIONS IN USA THAN THE POPULATION OF GUYANA......... WHY USA AMBASSEDOR MAKING GUYANA LOOK SO BAD
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-1 #19 Rock 2013-07-03 20:04
USA NEWS
A Bronx, New York legislator was charged Thursday with taking $22,000 in bribes after a fellow lawmaker trying to save his own skin wore a wire for the feds, blowing open the latest corruption case to rock New York politics.
-Then USA Ambassador in Guyana blaming Guyana for corruption in it Govt.
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+4 #18 Mitch 2013-07-03 20:03
Just bought the Tomas Carroll Affair book which I sm now reading, If the allegation prove to be true, there may be another book out in a few years about this Consular Officer.
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+3 #17 Rock 2013-07-03 19:59
If the USA is not corrupted why their top official in Guyana condone these fraud. They ball out Guyana is corrupted and they are in the mix and encourage it here.
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+6 #16 jawm 2013-07-03 19:59
Quoting Balwant Persaud:
I am not surprised because this guy, looks like a Mexican-American used to do his illegal and corrupt business in the open at the Hibiscus Restaurant.

What this guy's race or ethnicity got to do with his corrupt actions?
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+2 #15 Gusta 2013-07-03 19:54
Y you people not blaming the damn USA Visa man. If he followed the rules no one would pay him......Its clear that Obama's Administration has Corruption too
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+9 #14 my guyana 2013-07-03 19:31
Maybe that's why people who have assets in guyana are denied over and over again, its all about the money.
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+8 #13 free world 2013-07-03 19:31
Maybe that's why people who have assets in guyana are denied over and over again, its all about the money.
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+4 #12 phillsop 2013-07-03 17:09
Now you have it all around the place. Money and sex for everything. this is another nail in the coffin for Guyana,
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+6 #11 Balwant Persaud 2013-07-03 16:45
I am not surprised because this guy, looks like a Mexican-America n used to do his illegal and corrupt business in the open at the Hibiscus Restaurant.
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+8 #10 Collin 2013-07-03 16:38
Pray to god the US don't get mad and move there office out of Guyana like the canadian did, this is more shame and disgrace coming out of Guyana. Everybody hustling when they touchdown how they know this country so corrupt. Image this man just arrive in 2011 and didn't take long to knew the trade and main player.
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+3 #9 free world 2013-07-03 16:35
The u.s. rankes nineteen in the least corrup nations, its every where, some are cunning enough to hide it, in guyana its done blatantly . 98 customs and border patrol agents were in front of the courts as of last year following a couple year probe and that's just the tip of the iceberg. 100 000 children are estimated to been currently trafficed in the u.s.a. yet they put guyana on a tier2 list. Guyana is way down on the corruption list.
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+5 #8 pepperpot25 2013-07-03 16:30
They come to guyana and the country's corruption blood injected into them, they very well know that uncle sam dont stand for those things, well I guess he will say all those who were his costumers ,who paid the lump sum dollars to obtained those visa
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+8 #7 Eisha 2013-07-03 16:29
Job well done with the people who wants fast moneys..with no hard work..
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+4 #6 Pam Shaw 2013-07-03 16:21
i know of one more on the list of this Visa scam in Guyana
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+3 #5 Emile_Mervin 2013-07-03 15:55
US Consular Officer selling US visas while the PPP selling out Guyana to people willing to give kickbacs. Pity the US can't send law enforcers to take the PPP leadership to America for investigations, because the foolice force in Guyana is otherwise busy collecting...
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+6 #4 GT Man 2013-07-03 15:47
I think this crooksed to lime at Hibiscus Restaurant on Middle Streets every Wednesday nights and weekends. There were other crooks at the embassy who ran a racket. Demerara Waves should carry out an investigation as there is a bald head crook at the embassy doing the same now.

NB: This comment has been edited because the allegations against the named persons cannot be proven and they have not been charged.
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+9 #3 stef 2013-07-03 15:13
this is really frustrating for legitimate who are going with there hard earn money to be put aside for ppl who are paying big bucks for their visas but is gt we deh things like this will keep going on esp with the ppl with money who can afford to pay 40.000us only drug lords and other big ones can pay for that
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+10 #2 soldierman 2013-07-03 15:12
O Beautiful Guyana:everythi ng is happening in our Country, you name anything illegal and you find it being practiced here, from the top to the bottom, corruption is the order of the day, Guyana is crime-ridden, however when the head is sick,the entire body is sick, the Government is sick and it's affecting the entire Country.
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+5 #1 Roberts in USA 2013-07-03 15:03
Corruption lies in the USA Embacy Dept for the second time and USA blaiming Guyana for corruption. Plus OBAMA admin in New York city was recently charged for bribery.
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