Fewer caught for sham marriages in Singapore last year

Fewer people were convicted of marriage of convenience last year, according to the annual statistics report by the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA).

The report, which was released on Tuesday (Jan 27), stated that 170 people were caught for the offence, a 40 per cent drop from the previous year.


Number of persons convicted of marriage of convenience offences

2014 170
2013 284

In a marriage of convenience, a Singaporean marries a foreigner to enable the latter to enter or remain here.

The Immigration Act was amended in 2012 to criminalise such marriages.

Parties in a sham marriage and middlemen who arrange such unions can be prosecuted under the law.

Those found guilty can be fined up to $10,000 and/or jailed for up to 10 years.

Their immigration facilities such as visas, visit passes, long term passes, permanent residence will be revoked upon conviction.

In one such case, a man who needed money was paid $5,500 to enter into a sham marriage with a Chinese national to help her get a long-term visit pass.

The man and the woman were sentenced in August last year to six months in jail each.

If you know of any sham marriage cases, you can call the ICA at 1800-391-6150 to report it.