“NYC IT company owner sentenced to jail for fraud”

indica News Bureau-

New York-based Indian origin, owner of information technology companies has been
sentenced to jail time for using phony documents to fraudulently obtain
H1-B visas for foreign workers and submitting false tax returns and not
paying workers who were “benched” or not currently working on a project.

Sowrabh Sharma, 34, of New York City will be serving 15 months in prison
. He has previously pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge
Kevin McNulty in Newark federal court to superseding information. He
was charged with conspiracy to commit visa fraud and with subscribing to
false tax returns.

According to the press release dated March 27, 2019, Sharma is the
owner of both SCM Data Inc. and MMC Systems Inc. and offered
consultants to clients in need of IT support.

Both companies recruited foreign nationals with purported IT
expertise, most of which were students on student visas or recent college
graduates. Sharma would sponsor them for H-1B visas with the stated
purpose of working for SMC Data and MMC Systems’ clients throughout
the United States.

According to the court document, from 2010 through April 2015,
Sharma and others falsely represented to U.S. Department of Homeland
Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that
dozens of foreign workers had full-time “in-house” positions, and
would be paid an annual salary, as required to secure the visas.

However, Sharma and his companies only paid the foreign workers when
they were placed at a third-party client or a company that entered
into a contract for services with SCM Data and MMC Systems.

Sharma admitted of his wrongdoing, that he and SCM Data and MMC
Systems were violating USDOL regulations by not paying workers who
were benched.

Sharma also admitted that in some instances, foreign workers who were
benched between projects were told that if they wanted to maintain
their H-1B visa status, they would need to come up with what their
gross wages would be in cash and give it to SCM Data and MMC Systems
to generate phony payroll checks.

Sharma also admitted that he intentionally overstated and claimed
false expenses pertaining to SCM Data and MMC Systems on his U.S.
Individual Tax Returns for 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014 that resulted in
a tax loss to the United States of over $1.1 million.

In addition to the prison term, US District Judge Kevin McNulty
sentenced Sharma to one year of supervised release. Sharma made the
payment of the $1.1 million tax loss and penalties to the IRS prior to

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