Officials: Woman admits to scheme to harbor non-US citizens through marriage fraud

Officials say that Regina Johnson, 59, pleaded guilty on Tuesday. She is expected to be sentenced on Dec. 14.

Matt Trapani

Aug 9, 2023, 8:33 PM

Updated 307 days ago


A Newark woman had admitted to conspiring to commit marriage fraud to harbor non-United States citizens, according to U.S. Attorney Philip Sellinger.
Sellinger says that Regina Johnson, 59, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to one count of “a superseding indictment charging her and others with conspiracy to harbor non-U.S. citizens by orchestrating fraudulent marriages between the non-citizens and U.S. citizens.”
Officials say that Johnson and her sister, Andrea Torres, “facilitated sham marriages” for those “who wished to remain in the United States despite the lack of legal status or proper documentation.” The women paid potential spouses a fee to get married to the “non-citizen clients.”
The women also charged their clients for wedding ceremonies and afterparties “that were staged to make the sham marriages appear legitimate,” according to authorities.
Officials also say that Torres’ son, Phillip Torres, was charged for allegedly officiating some of the sham marriages.
Johnson is expected to be sentenced on Dec. 14. She could face up to 10 years in prison.

More from News 12