Chinese man fined for forged work permit
MONTEGO BAY, St James — A Chinese man was on Wednesday fined $200,000 in the St James Parish Court for forging his work permit.
Presiding judge Sasha-Marie Smith-Ashley imposed the sentence on Jiawe Huang, 21, who pleaded guilty to two counts of uttering a forged document.
According to court documents, Huang went to the Passport, Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA) on January 16 to apply for an extension of stay so that he could apply for an Alien Registration Card. He submitted a Chinese passport and a work permit card in his proper name.
Authorities say the passport was endorsed with a work permit and an endorsement authorising him to be employed in Jamaica until June 1, 2024, but his work permit card was valid until June 21, 2024.
The court was also informed that upon inspection of the stamp, the work permit card and endorsement appeared to be fraudulent.
During the interview, he stated that he had paid a man $500,000 to obtain the work permit and passport endorsement.
Inspection of his passport also revealed that he was denied entry on May 24, 2023. However, he returned to the island on May 28, 2023 and was landed until June 1, 2024. The landing stamp appeared to have been tampered with.
The border management system was checked, and there was no travel activity recorded for him on May 28, 2023.
Huang’s lawyer, Martyn Thomas stated in his mitigation plea that his client’s father has lived in Jamaica for the past 12 years and his mother for six.
The attorney explained that Huang’s parents had sent for him last year to work in their Westmoreland business.
“When he was landed, he obtained a work permit through an agent who applied for other relevant documents on his behalf and was paid a fee by Mr Huang’s father…When his permit expired and he went to renew it, he was informed that there were issues with his documents,” Thomas explained.
The attorney stated that his client has no issues with the allegations and did not wish to waste the court’s time, and requested leniency.
Smith-Ashley took into account Huang’s age, early guilty plea, and subsequently fined him $100,000 or 30 days in jail for each count.