The US has an “Asylum Fraud” Problem

By MRCTV, Special for  USDR

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) published a report Wednesday informing Congress that the Obama administration’s immigration agencies “have limited capabilities to detect asylum fraud,” and warning against a flawed system in which “an applicant whose asylum claim is fraudulent or who poses a threat to the United States is permitted to stay.”

The GAO explained the number of asylum applications more than doubled between fiscal years 2010 (47,118 applications) and 2014 (108,152 applications). Due to the massive increase in applications, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services currently has a backlog of 106,121 pending asylum requests.

What’s more, “neither agency has assessed fraud risks across the asylum process, in accordance with leading practices,” the GAO reports.

While not having a reliable system in place to detect asylum fraud, the GAO noted that USCIS terminated the asylum status of only 374 people from fiscal years 2010-14 for fraud reasons. While an asylee’s case is pending termination, that person is still eligible for certain federal benefits, GAO added. An initial review of a person’s asylum status can take up to 180 days.

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