For about a decade, mobsters operated a sham U.S. embassy in Ghana‘s capital of Accra, one that featured an American flag and a portrait of President Obama, according to the State Department.
That ended this summer in a raid of the pink two-story building topped with a corrugated iron roof. The office was found to issue fraudulently obtained U.S. visas, counterfeit visas and false identification documents for fees of $6,000, the State Department said in a statement.
“It was not operated by the United States government but by figures from both Ghanaian and Turkish [organized] crime rings and a Ghanaian attorney [practicing] immigration and criminal law,” a statement said. The “consular officers” were in fact Turkish citizens who spoke Dutch and English.
The investigation into the sham office also identified a fake Netherlands embassy, as well as two satellite locations linked to the fake U.S. embassy: a dress shop and an apartment building.
- The Fight to Save the Salmon
- Inside the World of Black Bitcoin, Where Crypto Is About Making More Than Just Money
- The 'Great Resignation' Is Finally Getting Companies to Take Burnout Seriously. Is It Enough?
- Suddenly, Everyone on TV Is Very Rich or Very Poor. What Happened?
- Colin Powell Reflects on His Mistakes in Unpublished TIME Interview
- Business Travel's Demise Could Have Far-Reaching Consequences
- If the U.S. Spends Big on Climate, the Rest of the World Might Follow