Ghana woman convicted of immigration fraud


A city resident faces a maximum sentence of 35 years behind bars after a federal jury convicted her on charges she used a fake identity to get U.S. citizenship.

Lady Jacqueline Locotin, also known as Joyce Amene Obese, a native of Ghana, was convicted in federal court on one count of unlawfully procuring naturalization, two counts of passport fraud and the misuse of a Social Security number on November 17.

City police, working in conjunction with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, arrested Locotin in her Alexandria home on June 7.

Locotin originally entered the country using a fake name and documents in 1992, requesting political asylum, officials said. She received a Social Security number under the Locotin identity while awaiting an immigration hearing scheduled for October 1993.

She skipped the hearing and later left the country, but not before having a child in 1996, court documents say.

In 1997, Locotin returned, this time using the name of Joyce Amene Obese to gain a visa. Though she became a citizen and obtained a U.S. passport using the alias, Locotin never alerted authorities to her previous stay in the country nor the birth of her child, according to court documents.

Locotin will be sentenced on February 10.