By Marilyn Silverman
Listen to the interview below with Brian Figeroux, Esq., of the Law Firm of Figeroux & Associates on his popular radio show, Ask the Lawyer!
It is no longer breaking news that Arleigh Louison, the Grenadian national who operated an illegal immigration service from an office situated on 223rd Lenox Road in the borough of Brooklyn, was indicted in Vermont. This information is documented and contained within the press release dated July 23, 2019, issued from the Office of the U.S. Attorney’s Department of Justice, wherein it stated in a 12-count charge, that Louison was indicted since he made false statements on applications and furthermore, submitted an astronomical 1,800+ fraudulent immigration applications within a period of just four years to the USCIS.
However, what is breaking and shocking news is that because the charges are considered accusations for now and require more in-depth investigation, Louison has since been released on bail. Why? Because he is presumed innocent under the auspices of U.S. law unless and until he is proven guilty. Unfortunately, via our investigations we have uncovered demonstrative proof that he has the brazen audacity to continue to break the law while engaging in his despicable immigration fraud, simultaneously bragging that he is the beneficiary of loopholes in the law, so consequently he has carried on with his illegal activities, while his victims are facing the frightening and very real specter of deportation proceedings.
The publication spoke with Brian Figeroux, Esq., of the Law Firm of Figeroux & Associates on his popular radio show, Ask the Lawyer. Mr. Figeroux, who is a member of the American Immigration Association (AILA) for over two decades, possesses vast knowledge, experience, and compassion for the plight of the immigrant community. He questioned the nerve of Louison and the role of government officials who were elected to be the voice of the people.
Victims Getting Notice from USCIS
Immigrants should be warned that if they used or are still using the services of Louison, they are at risk of being served a Notice to Appear (NTA), where they would be compelled to appear before the immigration court, which will make decisions based on their individual cases. Anyone who signed an I-360, I-765 or I-131or unwittingly signed any blank forms without reading the content or accessed any immigration services they are not qualified for, will be held responsible for their actions. It must be emphasized that immigration fraud is serious. Any immigrant found guilty will be banned for life from any immigration benefits. The majority of Louison’s victims weakened their defenses by signing blank forms for immigration benefits, for which they did not qualify. And, Louison, cunningly, did not sign the forms.
Being a registered notary, Louison faces a higher standard, and his punishment should be to the fullest extent of the law, where, if found guilty, results in a lengthier prison sentence. A prerequisite for this to happen means that the victims must testify against him. The law has made a provision for such victims based on the U-Visa. Although he might feel he is “untouchable,” perhaps he feels he has the people in power on his side, but with evidence, all that can change. “That loophole, he claims he knows, is going to get you, the victim into deportation proceedings…that loophole is filling his pocket with cash…,” Figeroux explained.
Role of the Government Officials
Government officials like the District Attorney of Kings County, Eric Gonzales, and Congresswoman Yvette Clarke need to rise to the challenge of putting a stop to the nefarious activities of Louison. Such criminal activities, if not checked, will continue to grow, and more victims will fall prey to similar actions. As Figeroux said, “He says, ‘I am untouchable.’ Does he have the Congresswoman in his pocket? Does he have the District Attorney in his pocket? Obviously, not.”
Congresswoman Clarke, whose office is across the street to Louison’s and who represents immigrants from the Caribbean, thus far hasn’t made any official statement whatsoever. Her silence is shocking and inexplicable. As Figeroux asked, “Does she deserve to represent the Caribbean immigrant community in her Congressional District? … These immigrants are desperate. They are scared. They need to survive. Will she help?”
In these frightening times where the President of the United States of America has embarked on a witch hunt of immigrants, too many immigrants are falling victim to scams due to the justifiable fear of being deported. As Figeroux emphasizes, “This is a serious crime against immigrants from Jamaica, Grenada, Guyana, Trinidad, St. Vincent, S.t Lucia, Haiti and other Caribbean islands…. the Consul Generals for these countries should be concerned. And the Prime Ministers of these countries should be concerned.”
Take a stand. Let your voices be heard. Call the Office of the District Attorney of Kings County at 718-250-2000 and ask him: “What investigations are being conducted?” Call Congresswoman Clarke’s Brooklyn Office (222 Lenox Road) at 718-287-1142 and ask her: “What is she doing?”
Let your voices be heard. “We put them in office. We could take them out of office if they do not protect us.” Remember, this is the United States of America, where we have the freedom to elect our government officials who work for us every day.
Workers’ World Today is a free publication that empowers all workers, regardless of social or political affiliations. Distributed throughout New York City, our paper has a mission to educate workers and provide them with relevant information pertinent to the workforce such as workers’ compensation, discrimination on the job, workers’ rights, and more.