US charges 20 people over Chinese birth tourism schemes

File photo shows resident Jin-Jou Lu talking to reporters after FBI raid of an upscale apartment complex where a birth tourism business was held, in Irvine, Calif. (AP)
Updated 31 January 2019

US charges 20 people over Chinese birth tourism schemes

SANTA ANA, CALIFORNIA: Twenty people have been charged in the largest-ever crackdown on businesses that help Chinese women travel to the United States to give birth to babies who automatically became American citizens.
The US Attorney’s office in Los Angeles says three people were arrested Thursday on charges including conspiracy, visa fraud, and money laundering. More than a dozen others have also been charged in cases stemming from three so-called birth tourism businesses.
Authorities say it’s the first time the US has criminally prosecuted birth tourism operators.
The businesses allegedly billed Chinese women thousands of dollars to travel to California to deliver their babies so the children automatically obtained US citizenship. Authorities say the women hid their pregnancies and lie about details of their trips.
Federal agents raided the businesses in 2015.


Japan’s Abe says he will meet Iran’s Rouhani this month in NY

Updated 32 min 26 sec ago

Japan’s Abe says he will meet Iran’s Rouhani this month in NY

  • Abe added that he would travel to Belgium after the UNGA session
  • He is also meeting with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker

TOKYO: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Tuesday he would meet with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at the end of the month, as regional tensions rise in the Middle East after the weekend attacks on Saudi oil facilities, public broadcaster NHK said.
It was during a meeting with members of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party that Abe repeated his intention of speaking with Rouhani on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) in New York, according to NHK.
Abe added that he would travel to Belgium after the UNGA session and meet with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, NHK said.