A Canadian national who operated a Los Angeles-area immigration consulting business that sought visas on behalf of aspiring foreign actors faces multiple criminal charges for allegedly cheating his clients out of thousands of dollars in an immigration scam.
Andrew Boryski, 26, was arrested Wednesday, January 9, 2013, by special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) at
"We will hold accountable charlatans who prey upon the career aspirations of others," said City Attorney Carmen Trutanich. "People who come to
After receiving several complaints about Boryski, the City Attorney's Office sought HSI's assistance in investigating the case. Coincidentally, HSI had also received a lead about Boryski's possible involvement in immigration fraud from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services' (USCIS) Office of Fraud Detection and National Security (FDNS).
"This suspect, who's an aspiring actor himself, has landed a role in a real life crime drama," said Claude Arnold, special agent in charge for HSI Los Angeles. "The fraud perpetrated by unscrupulous consultants who prey on innocent victims undermines the integrity of our nation's legal immigration system and ultimately hurts us all. Homeland Security Investigations will continue to work tirelessly with its federal and local partners to ensure these scam artists don't succeed."
The ensuing joint investigation revealed Boryski advertised over the Internet and presented himself at actors' seminars as an immigration consultant who could help aspiring foreign actors obtain visas to work in the
The O-1 visa is intended for established performers with work pending in the
SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director David White praised authorities' efforts to pursue this case saying, "We applaud the work to protect actors from unscrupulous business practices that attempt to separate them from their money. Performers from all jurisdictions should be able to pursue their dreams in the entertainment industry without fear of abuse and harm."
SAG-AFTRA General Counsel Duncan Crabtree-Ireland advised performers to be wary and inform themselves saying, "Immigration service scams can have devastating consequences for any performer. All performers should take an active part in their own protection by practicing due diligence and getting educated about the rules and process for work visas."
HSI's probe into Boryski's activities is ongoing. Investigators believe there may be additional unidentified victims.
Deputy City Attorney Mark Lambert is prosecuting the case.