Man indicted on sham marriage allegation

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - A federal grand jury has indicted a native of Lebanon living in Oklahoma City for allegedly entering into a marriage to evade immigration laws.

U.S. Attorney John Richter said Thursday Bassam Mahmoud Tarhini entered into a sham marriage with a woman identified only as D.I.T. on Sept. 19, 2003. Tarhini is also charged with signing a legal document that fraudulently claims the woman was his wife.

Richter says Tarhini came to the U.S. as a student at Oklahoma City University in 2000 and three years later solicited the woman to marry him so he could stay in the country.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Bob Troester says since the woman isn't charged, prosecutors can't discuss her.

The indictment says Tarhini is in jail but an attorney for him isn't listed.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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