“gray marriages”, emotional scams to obtain papers



Video length: 7 min

Investigation: “gray marriages”, emotional scams to obtain papers

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The government is issuing an alert over the increase in fraudulent marriages. These emotional scams are developing in particular on the internet, and mayors find themselves on the front line.

Still bruised, a Lorraine testifies anonymously. Six years ago, just divorced, she went to Djerba (Tunisia) for vacation, and fell in love with a Tunisian 15 years younger than her. After this trip, they contacted each other regularly, and she went back and forth to Tunisia to find him. “He told me I love you”, she remembers. They got married in Tunisia in 2019. By becoming her husband, he obtained a visa allowing him to legally enter French territory. When he arrives, he completely changes and leaves her, as soon as he receives his residence permit.

Online advice for obtaining papers

She was the victim of a “gray marriage”, a scam of feelings, in which one of the two spouses makes the other believe that he is in love in order to obtain papers. Me Charoulata Anandappane, lawyer in Thionville (Moselle), discusses “for two or three years” an increase in consultations for this reason. On the web, hundreds of videos are circulating with advice on obtaining papers. Marriage is one of the most often proposed.

Attempting to organize a gray wedding is an offense punishable by five years of imprisonment and a fine of 15,000 euros. To prevent these scams, town halls scrupulously study marriage applications.

Among Our sources:

Prefecture of Seine-de-Marne

Prefecture of Pyrénées-Atlantiques

Figures communicated by the Ministry of Justice

Figures communicated by the Nantes Judicial Court

Non-exhaustive list.

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