Two men remanded over sham marriage

Published Saturday, 21 December 2013
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Two Cameroon men have been remanded into custody accused of taking part in an alleged sham marriage.

Two men remanded over sham marriage
Five people were arrested when immigration officials swooped on the ceremony. (© Getty)

Appearing in the dock of Newtownards Magistrates' Court on Saturday was the groom, Dominic Narty, 28, and a witness, Elvis Assah.

Narty, with an address at Redwood Close in Cardiff, is accused of seeking leave to remain in the UK by deception namely a fake marriage and possessing a false identity document - a French identity card - with the intention of inducing the registrar to accept it as verification of facts about the bride, Fatou N'Diaye.

Asaah, who is 29 and has an address at Rodgerson Close, also in Cardiff, is accused of agreeing to act as a witness to the marriage which he knew or had a reasonable belief would facilitate a breach of immigration law.

Detective Constable Andrea Anderson, attached to the Home Office, told the court that she believed she could connect both men to the charges against them, but added that during police interviews Narty and Asaah had confessed to taking part in the sham marriage.

She outlined how officers swooped on Newtownards registry office on Thursday as Narty and N'Diaye were about to be wed, arresting the pair along with Asaah and two others.

Bride Fatou N'Diaye, 25, is a French national with an address at Ommuney Road in London.

She was detained along with witness and fellow French national Massiamie Bamba, 44 and from the Devonport Road, also London and an interpreter Joseph Vutung, 46 and from the Moat Road in Manchester.

They all appeared in the same court on Friday charged with assisting unlawful immigration and all were released on bail.

In court on Saturday, DC Anderson told the court the five had flown into Belfast International airport from various parts of the UK last Tuesday, adding that the bride and groom only met for the first time on the morning of their wedding.

Investigations revealed that Narty, she told the court, had tried to get married in Edinburgh eight weeks ago - but that his British born bride "must have got cold feet" and didn't turn up, adding that his visa, which permits him to stay legally in the UK, runs out at the end of January.

DC Anderson said police investigations revealed that in actual fact, Narty was marrying a woman called Raven Liata - but had given that lady's identity card to his bride who was a "lookalike".

Under questioning, N'Diaye admitted that she knew it was a sham marriage, that she had taken part in a sham marriage before and was still married through that legal ceremony.

The officer said everyone involved "admitted that it was a sham marriage" to facilitate citizenship within the European Union.

Objecting to the two men being released on bail, DC Anderson said that the police view was that there was a "huge risk" of the pair fleeing the jurisdiction and not turning up for court appearances in the future as they are "facing custodial sentences and deportation".

Narty's solicitor Connel Trainor suggested to the officer that his client had been living in the UK legitimately for three years and that despite her claims that he faces a jail sentence, self appointed Bishop Patrick Buckley received a suspended jail sentence in the last few days after he admitted officiating over numerous sham marriages.

Solicitor John Magee, acting on behalf of Asaah, submitted that he had also been living in the UK legally since November 2010, had completed studies in Cardiff and that if he chose to begin a PhD course, he would be granted a further visa.

Refusing the bail applications however and remanding the pair into custody until 14 January, District Judge McCourt said: "I'm satisfied that if they were released on bail they could easily take flight to leave the jurisdiction and the UK."

© UTV News
Comments Comments
Adrian in Coleraine wrote (124 days ago):
So elvis really did do weddings !
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