Ft. Bragg Soldier and “Wife” Convicted of Sham Wedding

| August 10, 2022

Well, here’s an interesting story. Man and so-called “wife” convicted in a sham marriage intending to get citizenship and benefits.

Ft. Bragg soldier, ‘wife’ convicted of sham wedding for $10K

by: Judith Retana | Aug 9, 2022

ALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – A Fort Bragg soldier and his wife are accused of being involved in a sham wedding in exchange for $10,000.

United States Attorney Michael Easley of the Eastern District of North Carolina says the Fort Bragg Criminal Investigation Division received a tip in February 2019 that Samuel Agyapong, a Fort Bragg soldier, agreed to marry Barbara Oppong, a 43-year-old Ghana citizen living in New York, in exchange for the money.

Court documents said Agyapong agreed to receive $10,000 upfront while knowing he would also receive additional Basic Allowance for Housing benefits from the Army for having a dependent spouse.

Through the “sham” marriage, Oppong got her green card in January 2015.

The U.S. Attorney’s office said Oppong later filed an application for U.S. citizenship. Since their marriage, court documents said the pair received about $110,000 of undeserved BAH benefits.

Other evidence presented at trial showed that Oppong lived in New York while Agyapong lived in a home he purchased in Fayetteville. An attorney argued they hardly ever saw each other.

In addition, attorneys said Oppong’s paperwork left out the fact she had two children with another man.

Agyapong was separately tried at a prior trial. He was convicted and sentenced to 18 months in prison and restitution of more than $110,000.

Oppong faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. Her sentencing hearing scheduled for the November 15 term of court.

Not entirely sure why he got 18 months and she may get 20 years.

What if they fell in love later?  Would it still be a sham?  The new movie “Purple Hearts” has this very same premise.

This also made me think about the current policy on gays in the military – I often wondered if two young military men or women may think it lucrative to marry even though they are not gay, in order to get housing and allowance in addition to getting to move out of the barracks or off the ship. I haven’t seen a lot of accounts of this, but I did anticipate it happening.

Category: "Teh Stoopid"

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Hack Stone

Stars And Stripes ran a few art tickets about GI’s entering into sham marriages for money and a green card back in the 1980’s. Nothing new here. Any chance to get some additional money, someone will find a way to get some.

ninja

Reference what Hack wrote:

Article came out in July 2021:

“Soldier’s Sham Marriage Conviction Exposes Immigration Fraud Ring In Military”

https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2021/jul/8/samuel-agyapong-sham-marriage-conviction-exposes-i/

Anonymous

Me love you, no sh*t, G.I.! You buy me Honda! (Same ol’….)

Sapper3307

So, no Good Conduct Medel?

tshe

He may get the prison version of the GCM.

ninja

We remember him…

He was sentenced this past February:

https://www.justice.gov/usao-ednc/pr/ex-fort-bragg-soldier-sentenced-theft-government-property-tampering-witness-and-fraud

Additionally, while he was in Iraq in 2007, he sent a Christmas Greeting to his Wife:

https://www.dvidshub.net/video/254344/staff-sgt-samuel-agyapong

ninja

sbalm:

You are welcome!

According to BOP, his release date is 7 September 2022, which sounds strange. One would think that if he was sentenced to 18 months, it would be September 2023, not September 2022.

ninja

From BOP:

Name: SAMUEL MANU AGYAPONG
Register Number: 02326-509
Age: 35
Race: Black
Sex: Male
Release Date: 09/07/2022
Located At: RRM Raleigh

KoB

Claiming a fake “institution” (marriage) for a real institution (prison). Odd how marriage and prisons are both referred to as institutions.

Hack Stone

Always a prison bridesmaid, never a prison bride.

SFC D

I had to deal with a sham marriage in 2008. The female Soldier was known to be very gay, even though this was during the “don’t ask don’t tell” era. Both partners in the marriage were deployed to Iraq, BN had offered to put them at the same base, they refused. So one day, my 1SG suddenly realizes this is a sham marriage, says we have to do something about it. I asked what exactly we’re supposed to do. He says “she’s gay, that makes this bogus and violates AR WTF Ever”. So I asked, “how do we know she’s gay”? We cant ask, she didn’t tell, we know its a sham but we can’t do a damn thing about it. Wasn’t worth the fight. Her husband ended up doing 9 years in Leavenworth for smuggling dope a year later, but that’s a different story.

Hack Stone

If the husband wasn’t gay before, he certainly would be after nine years taking it in the rear.

AW1Ed

Marriage of convenience to obtain Military benefits? Old, old story.

Hack Stone

Army investigators knew it was a sham marriage when they realized that his wife was calling his office ten minutes demanding to speak to him.

Hack Stone

“Wife was not calling his office every ten minutes…

Hack Stone Publishing regrets the error.

NDHoosier

Dammit, I’ve been visiting the TAH Tavern too much.

> Marriage of convenience to obtain Military benefits?

Here’s what came to mind: Daniel Bernath & Phil Monkress

You dickweeds have corrupted me. From the bottom of my heart, thank you! 😁

AW1Ed

Our work here is done.

CCO

What if the wife had run for Congress?

ninja

Reference Barbara Oppong:

“Bronx, NY Woman Convicted in Marriage Fraud Scheme”

https://www.justice.gov/usao-ednc/pr/bronx-ny-woman-convicted-marriage-fraud-scheme

ninja

This story came out 2 years ago:

“Former Ft. Bragg Soldier, 10 Others, Arranged Fraudulent Marriages Between U.S. Soldiers, Immigrants, Feds Say”

https://www.cbs17.com/news/local-news/cumberland-county-news/former-ft-bragg-soldier-10-others-arranged-fraudulent-marriages-between-u-s-soldiers-immigrants-feds-say/

“A former Fort Bragg soldier has been charged, along with 10 others, for arranging fraudulent marriages between U.S. Army soldiers and immigrants to help them evade U.S. immigration laws.”

” Ebenezer Yeboah Asane, 37, operating at Asane’s home in Fayetteville, planned and organized the sham marriages of foreign nationals to U.S. Army soldiers based at Fort Bragg.”

“The purpose of the conspiracy was for the foreign-born nationals to evade U.S. immigration laws and obtain lawful permanent residence status and for the soldiers to receive Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) to live off post, as opposed to the barracks.”

Daisy Cutter

He should get jail time simply for having the name “Ebenezer.”

Daisy Cutter

Then, of course, Ebenezer Scrooge.

ninja

😆😅🤣😂😆😅🤣😂

Daisy Cutter

From the official Army.mil website. Someone didn’t get the memo on Agyapong.

https://www.army.mil/article/119035/making_contracts_old_school_and_new

The heading “Making Contracts – Old School and New” is quite ironic given the circumstances.

agyapong.JPG
Last edited 3 months ago by Daisy Cutter
ninja

Did you see this 2007 Christmas video that DoD posted when he was in Iraq?

https://www.dvidshub.net/video/254344/staff-sgt-samuel-agyapong

Daisy Cutter

Yep. I bet it warmed her heart… if she even saw it.

26Limabeans

I keep hearing this song in the background as I read…

https://youtu.be/u5LWa18w-BE

Green Thumb

I wonder if this issue is being covered in the All-Points Logistics in-briefing?

Daisy Cutter

So, what makes a marriage fraudulent? If they get married and simply do not live together, is that fraudulent? Is the absence of love make it fraudulent? I know many married couples that do not live together and do not love each other. There are benefits in staying in the marriage.

I’m not doubting that this is a sham, but what I’m wondering is how do they come up with criteria for it being a sham?

Asking for a friend.

ninja

This is why it is a sham:

“Former Ft. Bragg soldier, 10 others, arranged fraudulent marriages between U.S. soldiers, immigrants, feds say”

https://www.cbs17.com/news/local-news/cumberland-county-news/former-ft-bragg-soldier-10-others-arranged-fraudulent-marriages-between-u-s-soldiers-immigrants-feds-say/

“A former Fort Bragg soldier has been charged, along with 10 others, for arranging fraudulent marriages between U.S. Army soldiers and immigrants to help them evade U.S. immigration laws.”

“The purpose of the conspiracy was for the foreign-born nationals to evade U.S. immigration laws and obtain lawful permanent residence status and for the soldiers to receive Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) to live off post, as opposed to the barracks.”

PJS

Somehow I expect this to be slightly less of a headache to the chain of command than E3 marries stripper.

ninja

Another Sham:

“Decorated Navy Chief Allegedly Bilked Fellow Sailors Out of Thousands with Investment Scam”
https://www.military.com/daily-news/2022/07/29/decorated-navy-chief-allegedly-bilked-fellow-sailors-out-of-thousands-investment-scam.html

“A Retired and decorated Navy Chief Petty Officer has been indicted by the SEC on allegations of convincing fellow Sailors to give him hundreds of thousands of dollars that he then gambled away, spent on personal items, or lost on risky stock investments.”

“Robert Murray Jr. ‘used the veneer of trustworthiness created by his U.S. Navy service to raise nearly $355,000 from approximately 44 investors,’ of which he would misappropriate nearly half — $148,000.”

“Navy records show that Murray, a Corpsman, had an extensive career serving both on ships and with Marines that spanned 20 years. Murray not only deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, he also earned the Combat Action Ribbon.”

NDHoosier

I didn’t know Bernie Madoff Technician was a US Navy rating.

MI Ranger

Man, all I ever heard about was guys marrying stippers to get out of the barracks.
She’d give him a few free lap dances and he’d give her freee medical. They would usually get tripped up when she gets pregnant while he is deployed or when he tells the doctor at the hospital he is not the father.

That movie kind of sounds like it…except she is just a singer not a “dancer” too.

Prior Service

I guess he’s not getting any official email in the hoosegow because there is nobody by that name in the global address book.

Sapper3307

At good old FORT BRAGG we had Club Menopause on Bragg BLVD. If you needed a wife but not kids.

bmorgan

If you needed a wife the Army would have issued you one.

An old cliche, but there… I said it.

NDHoosier

I can’t believe this word hasn’t been used yet in this thread, so I stake my claim:

“Dependapotamus”

A Proud Infidel®™️

“Dependapong” given the last four letters of their last names!

NDHoosier

Dependapong sounds like some kind of really fucked-up game.

jeff LPH 3 63-66

Hope no relation to Sam the Sham.

Daisy Cutter

AGYAPONG: People are starting to get suspicious. I need you to come to the command picnic this Friday.

OPPONG: What’s a command picnic?

AGYAPONG: It’s where everybody in my unit gets together and pretends we like each other. They said “You WILL go and you WILL have fun.”

OPPONG: What’s the purpose of that?

AGYAPONG: It builds morale… or something like that.

OPPONG: I don’t know. It’s a long drive.

AGYAPONG: There will be hot dogs, face painting and corn hole.

OPPONG: Well, why didn’t you say so. Count me in.

Then, later…

AGYAPONG: Nevermind. I think I’m going to prison instead.

OPPONG: Will they have corn hole in prison?

AGYAPONG: No doubt they will.

OPPONG: Face painting?

AGYAPONG: That too.

Last edited 3 months ago by Daisy Cutter
RGR 4-78

Will these two be allowed conjugal visits?

If not, I would consider that to be cruel and unusual penishment.

Carlton

Goddammit I just spewed coffee everywhere, you magnificent bastard.

tshe

I kid you not, they have a ‘Sammy the Shammy’ game.

https://www.to14.com/game.php?id=4d486a364a302

Drake

Hardly new. I remember growing up on US military bases and seeing old, dumb AF GIs being lead around by the nose but their import.

MikeyB

This is not a new phenomena. I talked my E-3 younger brother out of doing this 40 years ago after he was approached by a barracks lawyer with connections in Vancouver, B.C. He would receive $1,000 and BAH, and was convince it was foolproof. I asked him if 2 years at Leavenworth was worth the risk. He listened, thankfully.