Fake U.S. Embassy Operated in Ghana for a Decade


Somebody in the American embassy has some explaining to do.

al jazeera

Authorities in Ghana have busted a fake US embassy in the capital, Accra, run by a criminal network that for a decade issued illegally obtained authentic visas, the US State Department has said.

Until it was shut down this summer, the sham embassy was housed in a run-down, pink two-storey building with a corrugated iron roof and flew a US flag outside. Inside hung a portrait of President Barack Obama.

“It was not operated by the United States government, but by figures from both Ghanaian and Turkish organised crime rings and a Ghanaian attorney practicing immigration and criminal law,” the State Department said in a statement released late on Friday.

Turkish citizens, who spoke English and Dutch, posed as consular officers and staffed the operation. Investigations also uncovered a fake Dutch embassy, the State Department said.

Officials in the Netherlands were not immediately reachable for comment on Sunday.

The crime ring issued fraudulently obtained but legitimate US visas and false identification documents, including birth certificates at a cost of $6,000 each, the statement said.

During raids that led to a number of arrests, authorities also seized authentic and counterfeit Indian, South African and Schengen Zone visas and 150 passports from 10 different countries along with a laptop and smart phones.

The statement did not say how the gang obtained the authentic visas. And the State Department did not say how many people were believed to have illegally entered the United States and other countries using visas issued by the crime ring, which used bribery to operate unhindered.

“The criminals running the operation were able to pay off corrupt officials to look the other way, as well as obtain legitimate blank documents to be doctored,” the statement said.

There was no immediate comment from Ghana’s Criminal Investigations Division.

Visa appointments

Visas for Western countries are in high demand in Africa and embassies say the visa market is a big target for organised crime.

The real US embassy in Ghana is a prominent and heavily fortified complex in Cantonments, one of the capital’s most expensive neighbourhoods. Lines of people queue outside each day for visa appointments and other consular business.

The fake embassy was open three mornings a week and did not accept walk-in appointments. Instead, the criminals advertised on billboards in Ghana, Togo and Ivory Coast and brought clients from across West Africa to Accra where they rented them rooms in nearby hotels.

US authorities conducting a broader security operation were tipped off about it and assembled a team including the Ghana Detectives Bureau and police as well as other international partners to shut down the ring.

6 thoughts on “Fake U.S. Embassy Operated in Ghana for a Decade

  1. “a criminal network that for a decade issued illegally obtained authentic visas”
    This points to corruption and bribery within the USA passport issuing service.

    “US authorities conducting a broader security operation were tipped off about it ” It took ten years and even then the US authorities had to be tipped off. Why not ask new arrivals in the USA some simple questions? Such as, what was the address of the US Embassy? Which Consular Official/s did ytou deal with? What was the date of your first appointment with the Consulate?
    These type of questions should be asked of every black person or Muslim on non white arriving in the USA for the first time with a newly issued USA passport.

    It is likely this criminal scam is going on in just about every country in the world. Money talks. The bad news is that in such poor countries only criminals have the $6.000 to pay. Genuine non criminal rich people can get legal visas using their Ghana passport. They do not need a USA passport.

    Issuing passports to foreign criminals downgrades the host nation to the point where the passport is about as useful as say North Koreas.

  2. Ghana???? That country, if you can call it that has the lowest average IQ in Africa and possibly the world. What are (((these people))) doing? It’s far worse than I thought.

    • Ghana was the poster country for black Independence in the 1960s. Kwame Nkrumah I think the lefty leaders name was. I even owned a book written by the POS as I was a young naive lefty in those days. Educated in England and all that as were many African dictators. 50 years after black self governance you have the same hell holes that existed before a white man set foot on Africa.

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