A GHANIAN man was arrested moments before he was due to take part in a suspected sham wedding in Carmarthen.
Acting on information that the relationship may not be genuine, Home Office Immigration Enforcement officers attended the town’s Register Office in Richmond Terrace, shortly after noon on Wednesday, 18 September.
Just before the ceremony was due to begin officers intervened and the 31-year-old man, who had been living at an address in London, was arrested after checks revealed he was in the country illegally.
He had been due to marry a 25 year-old British woman who was interviewed by officers and later released.
The ‘groom’ has been detained pending his removal from the UK.
Two other Ghanaians a woman, aged 27 and 28-year-old man, who were guests at the wedding were arrested on suspicion of overstaying their visas.
Both have been released on immigration bail and must now report regularly to the Home Office while steps are taken to remove them from the country.
Andrew Hogan from Home Office Immigration Enforcement said:
“We are working closely with registrars to clamp down on sham weddings and civil partnerships.
“This operation is another example of the success that we are having.
“Where there are suspicions that a relationship may not be genuine we will investigate and, if necessary, intervene to stop it happening.”
A sham marriage or civil partnership typically occurs when a non-European national marries someone from the European Economic Area as a means of attempting to gain long-term residency and the right to work and claim benefits in the UK.
Anyone with information about immigration crime can contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 anonymously or visit http://www.crimestoppers-uk.org
Did you witness this? Please call Ian Lewis at 01267 227 298 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org