Northern Ireland

Irish students face arrest for faking age on passports

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The Union of Students in Ireland (USI) has warned students on J1 working visas or US travel visas not to travel on modified passports.

The union said it was aware of students arrested for using passports which had been altered to change the date of birth.

The problems arose while trying to travel or gain entry into licensed premises in the US.

The legal drinking age in the US is 21.

The USI said it was aware of one case in San Diego where an Irish student was arrested with an altered document at a nightclub. The case was passed to the FBI.

The Irish department of foreign affairs intervened through its consulate in San Francisco to get the student out of custody.

Adrianne Peltz, northern area officer for USI, said she did not believe the practice was widespread among students from Northern Ireland.

"Having said, that it's definitely something to make students aware of," she said.

"If anyone approaches them offering to alter a passport, they should take action immediately.

"Students have to remember falsifying or altering a passport is a federal offence."

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