US prosecutor honoured for probe against Infosys

US prosecutor honoured for probe against Infosys

A US prosecutor who successfully investigated a precedent-setting work visa fraud case against Infosys, resulting in the Indian IT giant paying a whopping USD 34 million in fine, has been recognised by Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Charles Johnson for his work.

Shamoil T. Shipchandler, former Eastern District of Texas federal prosecutor, and his investigative was presented with the Meritorious Service Award (Silver Medal), on October 21 in Washington DC by Johnson.

This is one of the highest awards for service granted by the Secretary of Homeland Security.The award was presented to Shipchandler for investigating and bringing to justice an illegal visa fraud operation that resulted in the largest immigration fine to date.
"Infosys was a precedent-setting case," said US Attorney John M Bales. "The case was investigated and resolved in a precedent-setting district. Successful prosecutions are based on a team effort, and I am delighted that DHS has singled out the Infosys team for special recognition."

Shipchandler led a team in the investigation and settlement of claims against Infosys Corporation, an Indian company involved in consulting, technology, and outsourcing services, a media release said.

According to court documents, the government alleged instances of Infosys circumventing the requirements, limitations, and governmental oversight of the H-1B visa program by knowingly and unlawfully using B-1 visa holders to perform skilled labor in order to fill positions in the US for employment that would otherwise be performed by United States citizens or require legitimate H-1B visa holders, it said.

The government also alleged that Infosys did so in order to increase profits, minimize costs of securing visas, increase flexibility of employee movement, obtain an unfair advantage over competitors and avoid tax liabilities, the official statement said.

"The unique settlement in the case involved the payment by Infosys of USD 34 million, the largest payment ever levied in an immigration case. The agreement also required additional auditing for I-9 forms; a reporting requirement for B-1 usage; an agreement to continue to use only detailed invitation letters, and the continued use of corporate disciplinary processes for employees that violate the immigration laws of the US," the media statement said.

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