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Colorado Man Sentenced to More Than 10 Years in Prison for Human Trafficking and Other Crimes
DENVER – Kizzy Kalu of Highlands Ranch, accused of bring nurses to the United States under false pretenses and then collecting much of their pay, was sentenced to serve 130 months in federal prison after being found guilty of visa fraud, human trafficking, mail fraud, and money laundering. Kalu will pay almost $3.8 million in restitution to the victims of his crime.
This case was investigated by the Department of State’s Diplomatic Security Service, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations, and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of the Inspector General, Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigations. Further critical support was provided by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Office of Fraud Detection and National Security, and by the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office.
Kalu and co-defendant Philip Langerman, of Georgia, provided false information to the U.S. government to bring foreign nationals to work in the United States. The foreign nationals worked for nursing homes and other long‑term care facilities And Kalu retained approximately 40 percent of the money the nurses earned. Prior to trial, Langerman pleaded guilty to his role in the criminal scheme.
Among the false information provided to the U.S. government was that the foreign nationals would be employed by Adam University as nurse instructor supervisors and would earn more than the prevailing wage so as not to undermine the wages of U.S. workers. The foreigners were granted H‑1B visas based on fraudulent representations that they would be working in eligible “specialty occupations” under U.S. immigration law and regulations.
Kalu promised the foreign nurses full-time work in Colorado. Upon their arrival, they learned that they would not be employed by Adam University in a clinical setting and would have to interview for nursing positions. The foreign nationals were forced to pay Kalu $800 to $1,200 a month under threat that he would notify the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and have their visas canceled if they did not pay him. Many of the victims were unable to leave Kalu because they fell into debt to pay for his assistance in obtaining the H-1B visas and they had signed employment contracts agreeing to owe Kalu $25,000 if they left his employment, and so were unable to leave him. .
Kalu was indicted by a federal grand jury in Denver on March 1, 2012. After a 17‑day jury trial, Kalu was found guilty of 89 counts of human trafficking visa fraud, mail fraud, and money laundering on July 1, 2013. He was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Brown and ICE Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Beth Gibson. Kalu was later sentenced by Chief U.S. District Court Judge Marcia S. Krieger. For details see: http://www.justice.gov/usao/co/news/2013/july/7-1b-13.html