Published on Monday, December 5, 2016
Bogus US embassy in Africa operated for a decade
A fake US embassy in Accra, Ghana, which issued illegally obtained visas for the US for a decade has been shut down.
Authorities in Ghana busted the embassy which was located in run down building with a US flag flying outside.
A portrait of President Barack Obama was found hanging on a wall inside.
It was operated by criminal gangs who sold authentic visas which were 'illegally obtained.'
"It was not operated by the United States government, but by figures from both Ghanaian and Turkish organised crime rings and a Ghanaian attorney practicing immigration and criminal law," the State Department said in a statement
It operated three times a week for years serving customers by prior appointment only.
Raids led to several arrests and authorities seized real and counterfeit visas for several countries along with about 150 passports.
Visas and other fake documents were sold for $6,000 the statement said.
"The criminals running the operation were able to pay off corrupt officials to look the other way, as well as obtain legitimate blank documents to be doctored."
The State Department did not say how the gang managed to come by the visas or how many were sold.