Beds, Herts & Bucks

Family in 'sham marriage scam': Three deny charges

A restaurant owner from Bedfordshire was at the centre of a "sham marriage" scam involving his family and staff, a court has heard.

Gyash Uddin, 39, of Ivy Road, Luton, allegedly used his business to help Bangladeshi men gain UK residency.

Luton Crown Court heard Mr Uddin set up marriages between the men and workers at restaurants he owned.

Mr Uddin denies conspiring to facilitate a breach of immigration laws by non-EU citizens.

Two other men on trial - Mohammed Razul Miah, 35, also of Ivy Road, Luton, and Mohammed Dolan Miah, 29, of Spencer Road, Luton - have also pleaded not guilty to the offence.

The court heard Mr Uddin, who owned a restaurant in Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire, was "at centre of the shams".

'Polish girls'

Prosecutor Will Noble said: "This case concerns a series of sham marriages or proposed sham marriages between Polish or British nationals and Bangladeshi nationals, who have either entered the UK illegally or have entered on visas that have expired or are close to expiring."

Mr Uddin allegedly operated the "sham" between 2003 and 2010.

"In addition to his family members, Uddin also assisted other Bangladeshi men who were in the UK unlawfully," said Mr Noble.

"Uddin conspired with them and others to arrange sham marriages to Polish girls also working for him.

"The intention behind these shams was to secure a right to reside in this country, not be deported and, ultimately, to obtain British citizenship with all its financial benefits."

Mohammed Razul Miah, claimed to be Mr Uddin's brother-in-law, is accused of taking part in a sham marriage as part of a bid to remain in the country.

Mr Uddin is alleged to have helped the third defendant, his nephew Mohammed Dolan Miah, in his attempt to go through a sham marriage to another Polish woman.

Mr Uddin pleads not guilty to eight charges of conspiring to facilitate a breach of immigration laws by non EU citizens. He also denies a charge of possessing a blank Bangladeshi birth certificate for use in fraud.

Mohammed Razul Miah denies two similar charges and Mohammed Dolan Miah denies three.

The jury were told the two Polish "brides" have pleaded guilty to their part in the conspiracy and will be sentenced later.

The trial continues.

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