A Bahamian woman on Thursday tearfully admitted participating in a sham marriage aimed at giving her fake husband the right to live here.
Janelle Brown, 26, of Mason’s Addition, pretended to be Jessica Newbold when she entered into a marriage of convenience with Lugens Saint-Aude in 2015 in order for him to get a spousal permit, the court heard.
Brown pleaded guilty to 13 counts of fraud related to the scam at her arraignment before Magistrate Samuel McKinney.
According to ASP Barrington Miller, the prosecutor, the fraudulent marriage was uncovered when the real Jessica Newbold tried to register the birth of her child in 2019.
The staff at the Registrar General’s Department refused to register the birth because Newbold was “already married”, the court heard.
Newbold insisted that she was single and had never been married. After leaving the Registrar General’s Department, Newbold made a complaint with police.
As a result of their investigations, Brown was arrested. She admitted to marrying Saint-Aude in 2015 for $1,500.
Brown said that they had never lived together. The court heard that Brown lives with her mother and four children, who range in age from two to nine.
Brown’s lawyer, Anthony Newbold, asked the court to reserve sentencing for his client until he gets a probation report.
Explaining his request, Newbold said, “Something must have happened to drive Ms. Brown to go to such lengths.”
McKinney adjourned the matter to April 6 for sentencing.
In the interim, the Wendy’s cashier has been remanded to prison.
Brown’s fake husband denied charges related to the fraudulent marriage scheme on Wednesday.
He, too, has been denied bail until his trial on May 19.