Afghan-Born Man To Lose Citizenship After Criminal Trial

Authorities in Santa Ana say an Afghan-born man faces up to 10 years in federal prison for lying on his citizenship application.

Federal prosecutors alleged the 35-year-old Ahmadzai lied on his citizenship application papers by not disclosing prior convictions for drug sales, assault and battery, forgery and receiving stolen property.

A spokeswoman for the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement says naturalization fraud cases rarely reach criminal trial.

The jury verdict, reached late yesterday, means a federal judge will strip Ahmadzai of his citizenship at a January 28th sentencing, setting him up for deportation to Afghanistan.

ICE has obtained guilty pleas in three criminal naturalization fraud cases in the past year in the Los Angeles area, but none has gone to trial.

Ahmadzai applied for citizenship 15 years ago.

He also pleaded guilty to passport fraud in 2006.

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