By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
A former New York State assemblywoman accused of buying an $8,000 sham marriage to gain citizenship was sentenced on Friday to one year in prison by a judge who said pursuit of the American dream was a poor excuse for her actions.
The judge, Denise L. Cote of Federal District Court in Manhattan, ignored requests for leniency so that the former assemblywoman, Gabriela Rosa, 47, a native of the Dominican Republic, could care for her 16-year-old son and her mother.
Ms. Rosa’s lawyer, Genesis A. Peduto, told the judge that her client married to obtain a green card 20 years ago when she was following the American dream and “looking for a better life.”
“Are you suggesting that committing marriage fraud, which in this case meant paying $8,000 to another person and lying to immigration officials for years, is the American dream?” the judge asked.
Gabriela Rosa, who served in the New York Legislature as a Democrat, received a one-year sentence for using a fake marriage to gain citizenship.