The abuse of our immigration system doesn’t just take place at the border. And stories like these are why the defenses of birthright citizenship and anchor babies, for people who are clearly not Americans and have no intention of even being Americans, is so infuriating.
SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — Dongyuan Li’s business was called “You Win USA,” and authorities say she coached pregnant Chinese women on how to get into the United States to deliver babies who would automatically enjoy all the benefits of American citizenship.
Over two years, the now-41-year-old raked in millions through her business, where mothers-to-be paid between $40,000 and $80,000 each to come to California, stay in an upscale apartment and give birth, authorities said.
While it isn’t illegal to visit the United States while pregnant, authorities said the businesses — which were raided by federal agents in 2015 — touted the benefits of having U.S. citizen babies, who could get free public education and years later help their parents immigrate.
Come to America. Have your baby. Get a free pass.
While they were paying their tourism pimps six figures, they were having their babies at taxpayer expense.
Each business brought hundreds of customers to give birth in the United States and some didn’t pay all of the medical costs tied to their care, prosecutors said. One couple paid the indigent rate for their hospital bills — a total of $4,080 — even though they had more than $225,000 in a U.S. bank account they had used to shop at luxury stores including Louis Vuitton, according to court papers.
These aren’t poor people doing this. And the scale of the abuse is huge.
This week, a federal grand jury indicted four people who allegedly ran the birth tourism businesses until the 2015 raids, including Wen Rui Deng, 65, who is believed to be in China and accused of operating “Star Baby Care.”
That business dated to at least 2010 but advertised having brought 8,000 women to the United States — half of them from China — and claimed to have been running since 1999, prosecutors said.
Build a wall. But also reform our immigration system. And end the anchor baby scam.