12 charged in WNC marriage fraud conspiracy, US Attorney says

FILE. (From: Associated Press)

CHARLOTTE, NC (WSPA) – A dozen men and women, including 7 from Cherokee were indicted on charges related to marriage fraud in western North Carolina.

According to the indictment, the defendants were part of a fraudulent marriage scheme between June 2015 and December 2016 in Swain and Jackson Counties.

The indictment says that McCoy, Perez, and Marsiano arranged sham marriages by connecting US citizens with non-citizens including Dostanov, Reint, and Peltz.

As part of the fraud, the indictment says these non-US citizens would pay between $1,500 and $3,000 for the services and would travel to Sevier County, TN to enter into the marriages.

The 12 people indicted are:

Ruth Marie Sequoyah McCoy, 54, of Cherokee, NC
Timothy Ray Taylor, 41, of Cherokee, NC
Golan Perez, 38, of Cherokee, NC
Ofir Marsiano, 41, of Pigeon Forge, TN
Kaila Nikelle Cucumber, 27, of Cherokee, NC
Jessica Marie Gonzalez, 26, of Cherokee, NC
Jordan Elizabeth Littlejohn, 28, of Cherokee, NC
Kevin Dean Swayney, 36, of Cherokee, NC
Ilya Dostanov, 28 of Panama City, FL
Ievgenii Reint, 26, of St. Simons Island, GA
Shaul Levy, 26, of Norfolk, VA
Yana Peltz, 30, of Israel

All 12 are charged with one count of Conspiracy to Commit Marriage Fraud. Marsiano is charged with four counts of Marriage Fraud, McCoy and Perez are each charged with three counts of Marriage Fraud while Taylor, Cucumber, Gonzalez, Littlejohn, Swayney, Dostanov, Levi, and Peltz are each charged with one count of marriage fraud.

Each count carries a maximum prison term of five years.

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