Ethiopia's Deputy Consul General in Los Angeles stands accused of visa fraud and faces a maximum sentence of up to 30 years.
Arrested and charged is Desta Woldeyohannes Delkasso, who has been serving at her current role since 2016. The diplomat was arrested on Wednesday for the violations of privileges afforded to diplomats, to benefit those that do not qualify under federal regulations.
The 54-year old was charged "in a three-count indictment unsealed, charged with three counts of visa fraud, including falsely stating that her brother and his wife were 'single' and fully supported by her and that their minor child was her son," according to the indictment.
An investigation by the United States Department of States' Diplomatic Security Service Criminal investigation Division; she is said to falsely claim that her nephew was her biological son and that her brother and sister-in-law were her dependents financially supported by her and lives in Los Angeles. This helped them win an A-1 diplomatic visa. However, they were said to live in Washington DC and not in Los Angeles (with her) as indicated by her visa application received at the US Embassy in Addis.
Her case is set to be prosecuted by the Assistant US Attorney, Lana Morton-Ownes of the Violent and Organized Crime Section.
Attempt made to the Ethiopian Foreign Ministry by The Reporter did not yield any results, as of press time.
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) is set to visit Los Angeles at the end of the month, as part of a mission to lure the Ethiopian Diaspora and take part in investing in the country.