My Big Fat Fake Wedding

Yesterday, the news reported that fake marriages have risen by 66% in the UK. Brent council in London experience 5 to 6 fake marriages a week. A high proportion of fake marriages involve South Asians. Many fake marriages are coordinated by gangs involved in people trafficking, drugs and prostitution. BBC Panorama this week covered a story and followed a couple’s fake marriage.

Their investigation found the groom (Asian) living by himself following the wedding in East London and the bride was nowhere to be found. The search for the bride took them to Portugal only to discover that the woman who was meant to be the bride had had her passport and identity stolen.

Fake marriages ensure those who are from outside of the EU to travel, work and live anywhere in the EU. However, the UK Borders Agency have asked clergy to clamp down on suspicious marriages and call in the authorities.

I cannot imagine what it is like to need to have a fake marriage to stay in a country. I do not know what it is like to be part of human trafficking of under the control of a gang. Therefore, I cannot judge these people and their needs.

However, I do know how lucky I am to have a British passport and the freedom it gives me to travel, live and work quite freely.



2 Comments to “My Big Fat Fake Wedding”

  1. HI Bunty,

    I didn’t know this was a widespread problem. I guess if you are from a developing country or unsafe part of the world it is only natural to want to leave for prosperity and safety and then good old fashioned economics of demand and supply kick in.

  2. I have to admit that I thought these fake weddings were quite funny and didn’t really care about them – I had no idea that there is a much murkier side to it all.

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