FBI Raids Alleged "Birthing Centers" For Rich Chinese Tourists

Twenty sites across Southern California were raided, with operators arrested on charges of fraud. The women were taken to hospitals.


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The FBI yesterday raided twenty "maternity hotels" across Southern California, where the FBI alleged Chinese tourists were giving birth to their children in an effort to secure them U.S. citizenships.

LAist reports:

While birth tourism isn't illegal, the operators of the alleged schemes are in hot water and could face criminal charges. They're being accused of taking part in visa fraud and conspiracy by coaching women on how to obtain tourist visas, falsifying records and giving them pointers on how to talk to immigration officers at LAX, according to search warrant affidavits unsealed today.

Birth tourism operators charge foreign nationals tens of thousands of dollars to help them give birth in the U.S., according to the affidavits. Pregnant women reportedly paid $40,000 to $80,000 to stay at one of the birthing centers, a fancy, resort-like apartment complex in Irvine called the Carlyle, which comes along with amenities like a pool and cabanas. The women are pampered at these fancy digs with handlers acting as their chauffeurs, taking them around to restaurants and stores.

When they go into labor, they're sent to local hospitals, where they pay discounted rates: instead of $25,000, some of these women are only forking over $4,000 to nothing through claiming that they're uninsured, low-income patients, the affidavits said. Hospitals are apparently losing lots of money over these births.

The fraud against hospitals is the most concerning part of this story, and illustrates the danger of forming policies on how hospitals treat patients based on lowest common-denominator stereotypes. The women, if the FBI's allegations are true, engaged in a massive theft of services from California hospitals. The mothers and expectant mothers were not charged in the FBI affidavit, only the facilitators that aided women in the fraud.

U.S. citizenship is conferred onto children born in the United States irrespective of their parents'immigration status.  The law makes no distinction between children born to parents with visas, green cards, or here illegally. In that way, birthright citizenship is a relic of a nation of immigrants that had few immigration laws when it was being built. It stands in stark contrast to the confusing and complicated rules governing legal entry and residence in the country. The latter ought to be realigned to the former, which would make immigration into the country simpler and the kind of fraud the FBI is alleging in Southern California less profitable.

As for why Chinese parents want their children to have U.S. citizenship (which also opens the door to them being able to move to the U.S. in the future), one mother explained: "If things were good in China, why would we need to come here?"

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  1. The women in the affidavit, if the FBI’s allegations are true, engaged in a massive theft of services from California hospitals. The mothers and expectant mothers were not charged in the FBI affidavit,

    Why the fuck not?

    1. Is there anything the hospitals can do if they get the names of the people (mothers) who did this? Civil actions?

      1. If the mom’s are back in China, there’s no way to collect.

        The Chinese govt will not be interested in the subpoena’s.

        However, the parents probably will want to come back to the U.S. at some point, and I suspect having a default judgement against them will make that very unappetizing.

        I wonder if suing them, getting the default judgement, and making it clear that they will be pursued for the money would cut down on the practice.

    2. While birth tourism isn’t illegal

      Probably because they weren’t technically doing anything illegal?

      I suppose maybe you could charge them fraud, but technically many of them probably were uninsured, just not actually low-income if they can afford the fancy digs.

      1. Penaltax to the rescue!

    3. Forget the civil suits by the hospitals.

      I want to know why the FBI isn’t charging people who committed fraud with, you know, fraud?

  2. Anchor babiez?

  3. If they want to have their kids here they should be put to work on the railroads just look in the good ol’ days.

    1. Or the mines:

      Up in Canada now, they’re blasting tunnel

      under $ a foot, all done with a pigtail.

      They’ve got some new explosives there.

      Fantastic stuff.

      They give it to Johnny Chinaman…

      send him in,

      down comes tons of rock…

      and one dead Chinaman.

      You, sir. Do you know what the fine is

      for killing a Chinaman?

      $ maximum.

      The inspector is working for the company.

      Four times out of five it’s an accident.

      You could do this here with your own zinc.

      All you’ve got to do is give the bugger

      a box of this stuff…

      put him down the hole,

      up to the rock face…

      and there’s your zinc.

      Sixty-five cents a ton.

  4. I used to go to UC Irvine. I’ve met more than a few wealthy Asian students who usually grew up in China, Korea, or Japan, but just happen to have been born the US….bastards were always my subteam lead in engineering clubs too….

  5. Pregnant women reportedly paid $40,000 to $80,000…
    Cutting directly into the federal bureaucracy’s profits.

  6. We would never want the children of rich and industrious Chinese people to become citizens. They might do something subversive like start a business or be productive citizens. We want the children of illiterate, non English speaking Central American peasants to be citizens, since they are much more likely to go on the doll and be dependent on government.

    1. It’s costlier to buy the votes of people who already have money.

      1. It’s harder to breed indigence into already industrious populations. You need a couple generations of free shit to really get a compliant crop of humans to exploit.

    2. shouldnt everone be able to use their right to travel and work a lawful profession, regardless of the $ they have?

  7. OT: I asked in the Heinlein thread, but I think it was pretty much dead, so I’ll ask here too: is the formatting all fucked for anyone else, or are the skwirrelz just fucking with me today? The H&R page looks normal but everything else is fucked up, like the pages have no formatting. It looks worse than a geocities page from the early ’90s.

    1. The formatting is different, but definitely there. Sounds like your browser isn’t loading the CSS for some reason.

    2. Yes, the formatting and screen action are whacky; also a new “Editor’s Note” at the top of the comment section.

  8. “the kind of fraud the FBI is alleging in South Carolina”

    I thought it was southern California?

    1. Lindsey Graham told the bigots to shut up.

  9. The FBI yesterday raided twenty “maternity hotels” across Southern California, where the FBI alleged Chinese tourists were giving birth to their children in an effort to secure them U.S. citizenships.

    What happened to Obama’s support of reproductive choice?

  10. I’ve made $64,000 so far this year working online and I’m a full time student. I’m using an online business opportunity I heard about and I’ve made such great money. It’s really user friendly and I’m just so happy that I found out about it. Heres what I’ve been doing,,,,,

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