#SiliconValley tech rats busted for H-1B visa fraud

Two Bay Area tech executives are accused of filing false visa documents through a staffing agency in a scheme to illegally bring a pool of foreign tech workers into the United States.

An indictment from a federal grand jury accuses Jayavel Murugan, Dynasoft Synergy’s chief executive officer, and a 40-year-old Santa Clara man, Syed Nawaz, of fraudulently submitting H-1B applications in an effort to illegally obtain visas, according to Brian Stretch, U.S. attorney for the Northern District of California.

The men are charged with 26 counts of visa fraud, conspiracy to commit visa fraud, use of false documents, mail fraud and aggravated identity theft, according to prosecutors. Each charge can carry penalties of between two and 20 years in prison.

Murugan, 46, is co-owner of Dynasoft, an employment firm based in Fremont with an office in India, according to the indictment. Nawaz is believed to have worked for several Bay Area tech companies, including Cisco, Brocade Communications and Equinix.

The H-1B visa program was designed to allow U.S. companies to hire skilled workers from around the world. The program is a lifeblood for local tech firms, bringing engineers, scientists and other professionals to the Bay Area. But critics say the program allows companies to replace U.S. employees with younger, cheaper foreign workers.

Read the whole story in the Mercury News

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