Cougar Ridge Elementary School students witness citizenship ceremony

April 10, 2012

Ann Marie Petry, Cougar Ridge Elementary School music instructor (right), leads students in the singing of two patriotic songs at an April 6 naturalization ceremony held at Cougar Ridge. The naturalization candidates are on the stage behind Petry. By Tom Corrigan

Isabelle Bouanna came here from France in 1995 when her husband Cyril got a job at Microsoft.

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Children invited to participate in ‘We Are America’ art contest

July 6, 2010

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has commissioned an art project for children ages 5-12 to create images depicting their interpretation of the theme, “We Are America.”

The project asks children to draw pictures that answer the question “People have come from all over the world to become Americans. Why does that make us great?”

USCIS will display submissions in offices across the country and will recognize participants during the 2010 celebration of the “September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance.”

All art submissions must be:

  • On 8.5-by-11 or 11-by-17 paper in any medium, including paint, crayons, markers, colored pencils or a collage.
  • Accompanied by a short paragraph (two to three sentences) that explains how the picture relates to the project theme and answers the question.
  • Submitted to USCIS by Aug. 16.

Obtain a submission form here.

Thai Ginger owner sentenced for immigration scheme

February 23, 2010

A judge sentenced the owner of the Thai Ginger restaurant chain, Issaquah resident Varee Bradford, to six months in prison last week for her role in what authorities described as a long-running immigration scam. Read more

Thai Ginger owner sentenced for immigration scheme

February 19, 2010

NEW — 6:30 p.m. Feb. 19, 2010

A judge sentenced the owner of the Thai Ginger restaurant chain, Issaquah resident Varee Bradford, to six months in prison Friday for her role in what authorities described as a long-running immigration scam.

Bradford, 44, recruited U.S. citizens to enter sham marriages with Thai citizens in order for the immigrants to obtain legal status to stay in the United States. She pleaded guilty last October to conspiracy to commit immigration fraud and three counts of fraud relating to immigration documents. Agents arrested Bradford for the immigration scheme last June at her Issaquah home.

“You used your money and position to circumvent the law,” U.S. District Court Judge Ricardo S. Martinez told Bradford during the sentencing hearing. “This mocks the efforts of immigrants who work hard and wait years to obtain citizenship.”

Thai Ginger operates restaurants in Klahanie, Bellevue, Redmond and Seattle.

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