LOS ANGELES (AP) – The U.S. government agency that oversees immigration applications is launching an office that will focus on identifying Americans suspected of cheating to get their citizenship and seek to strip them of it.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Director L. Francis Cissna told The Associated Press his agency is hiring several dozen lawyers and immigration officers to review cases of immigrants who were ordered deported and are suspected of using fake identities to later get green cards and naturalize.
Cissna says the cases would be referred to the Department of Justice. Government attorneys could then seek to remove the immigrants’ citizenship.
The move comes after the U.S. discovered a trove of immigrants’ fingerprint records had not been inputted into a government database.
Denaturalization is rare and federal court proceedings are required.