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MPs urge greater powers for registrars to halt sham marriages

Registrars should be given greater powers so they can stop weddings they believe are "bogus", an influential group of MPs has said. The Home Affairs Select Committee said more needed to be done to prevent what had become immigration scam "industry".

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MPs warn of 'industry of deceit' to get round UK borders

There is an "industry of deceit" which allows people to hop over border controls using a sham marriage, the head of an influential group of MPs has said.

Home Affairs Select Committee chair Keith Vaz said:

There is an industry of deceit in the UK which uses sham marriages to circumvent immigration control.

The estimated 10,000 sham marriages appears to be increasing at an alarming rate. One sham marriage can provide UK residence rights to an entire extended family who would otherwise have no right to be here.

The role of registrars is critical. The Home Office should not only provide them with better feedback and training on reporting but also empower them to stop suspicious marriages.

Data is not being collected in a consistent manner across the UK. We cannot afford for any town or city to become a back door entry to our country.

The Government needs to publish the total number of interventions, arrests, prosecutions and removals to prove that action is being taken.

– Keith Vaz

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