Report: UK Visa Scammers Offer Men £10K To Pose As Fathers

    Report: UK Visa Scammers Offer Men £10K To Pose As Fathers
    Last updated May 16, 2023
    Image credit: Alamy [via The Guardian]


    • A BBC Newsnight investigation has revealed that multiple British men have taken payments of thousands of pounds to add their names to birth certificates of migrant women's babies, helping the child to get UK citizenship and the mother a residency route.[1]
    • This comes as an undercover researcher, posing as a pregnant woman who was living in the UK illegally, spoke to agents and claimed the process was "very easy" and that the passport would "definitely be granted," with British men receiving up to £11K ($13.7).[2]
    • The report also drew on allegations made by two women who claimed to have paid from £9K to £10K for a fake father to appear on their children's birth certificates, with one of them later discovering that the man had lied about his immigration status.[3]
    • Fraudsters have allegedly been using Facebook to find and attract prospective "fathers" on claims that they have helped thousands of women with the move. Though Facebook's parent company Meta asserts such content violates its policies and is to be removed, the investigation claims it was widely advertised on some Vietnamese groups for job seekers.[4]
    • Under Home Office rules, a parent who has sole or shared parental responsibility over a child that lives in the UK and is already a British citizen can apply for a family visa as long as the other parent is a British citizen as well.[5]
    • Last year, more than 4.8K family visas were granted to "other dependents," but the scale of the alleged fraud couldn't be estimated as the Home Office doesn't detail data on visas granted for non-UK parents of British children.[1]


    Establishment-critical narrative

    This is just the latest way that economic migrants and people traffickers have found ways to skip the line for regular migration, as Conservative governments have successively failed to curb illegal immigration for more than a decade. Britain must restore control over its borders and scrutinize allegations made by those applying for family visas and claiming asylum.

    Pro-establishment narrative

    While this report is concerning, authorities have been working to curb a range of very sophisticated immigration scams. It is outrageous that fraudsters would take advantage of a rule enshrined in law to protect children, and officials are prepared to fully investigate these claims.

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