NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Aberdeen woman 'got married to help friend' over visa

An Aberdeen woman has told how she married a friend's Nigerian boyfriend to help him stay in the UK.

Kizito Ugo Nwajeri, 31, is accused of paying Kirsty Birnie £5,000 to be his wife so he could extend his student visa.

Miss Birnie told the High Court in Aberdeen she was told to "name her price".

Mr Nwajeri, of Bolton, faces a charge under the Immigration Act.

Morven Hutcheson, of Aberdeen, had earlier told the court she helped her boyfriend Mr Nwajeri arrange the wedding because she was married.

On Wednesday, Miss Birnie said the plan "snowballed" after she accepted the first payment of £2,000.

She said: "They were in love and wanted to be together. His visa was running out. Morven was in tears saying she was happy and deserved to be happy.

"I had been told all this stuff to say about how we met."

'Loved you'

The witness said she did not realise the seriousness of her actions until she watched a television show about fake marriages.

She said she contacted her new husband to ask for an annulment, but he refused.

The witness said: "He said, 'you took my money, so no'."

She added: "I went to a solicitor about getting a divorce but I didn't have a marriage certificate. I had never seen one. They couldn't do anything."

Defence counsel Louis Moll QC told the witness that Mr Nwajeri claimed he married her because he had fallen in love with her.

He said: "He told you on a number of occasions that he loved you."

She replied: "Well he did actually, yeah.

"I have got no feelings for him whatsoever. I did it for Morven, because they were so in love.

"I was naive in all this. I didn't realise the extent of how wrong it was."

The trial continues.

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