Indian consular officer Devyani Khobragade is charged with visa fraud and making false statements. Read more about the indictment
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
-- -- ..
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
The Grand Jury charges:
1. DEVYANI KHOBRAGADE, the defendant or the
"defendant"), knowingly made, and caused to be made, multiple false representations and
presented, and caused to be presented, false information to U.S. authorities in order to obtain a visa
for a personal domestic worker (the "Victim") whom she planned to bring with her to the United
States when she was posted to the Consulate General of India in New York in or about September
2. KHOBRAGADE did not want to pay the Victim the required wages under U.S.
law or provide the Victim with other protections against exploitative work conditions mandated by
U.S. law (and widely publicized to foreign diplomats and government officials). Knowing that if
the U.S. authorities were told the truth about the actual terms of her employment agreement with
the Victim, KHOBRAGADE would not have been able to obtain a visa for the Victim,
KHOBRAGADE decided to make false statements to the U.S. authorities. I
3. On November ll, 2012, KHOBRAGADE executed a fraudulent employment
agreement that made it appear as if KHOBRAGADE had entered into an agreement with the
Victim that complied with U.S. labor laws (including, among other things, a wage at the prevailing
wage). At KHOBRAGADE's request and direction, this fraudulent employment agreement was
submitted to the U.S. Embassy in India in connection with the Victim's visa application on
November 14, 2012. The Victim then obtained a visa on the basis of the fraudulent employment
4. A few days later, on November 23, 2012, KHOBRAGADE had the Victim
execute a second agreement setting forth the true terms of employment, which provided for the
payment of a legally insufficient wage (a total of 30,000 rupees -- approximately $5731 -- per
month or $6,876 per year, regardless of the number of overtime hours). The second agreement
lacked other legally required protections for the Victim. In fact, KHOBRAGADE also
specifically deleted a provision acknowledging that "Employer agrees to abide
by all Federal, state and local laws in the a provision that was included in the fraudulent
employment agreement shown to the U.S. authorities for the purpose of obtaining the Victim's
visa. This second agreement, with the actual terms of employment, was never submitted to U.S.
authorities. After KHOBRAGADE and the Victim signed the second agreement, they traveled
from India to the United States that same night.
1 Based on the conversion rate set forth in the U.S. Department of Treasury Rates of Exchange
Report dated September 30, 2012, available at
5. Once in the United States, KHOBRAGADE made the Victim work often up to
100 or more hours per week without a single full day off, which, based on the promised salary of
$573 per month, would result in an actual hourly wage of $1.42 per hour or less.
6. In or about June 2013, after approximately seven months, the Victim fled from
KHOBRAGADE's home. Following the Victim's decision to leave KHOBRAGADE's employ,
KHOBRAGADE caused the Victim's family in India to be contacted repeatedly by a relative of
KHOBRAGADE's ("Relative-1") and various other individuals in an attempt to persuade the
Victim to return to India and not report her experience with KHOBRAGADE.
7. In a July 2013 public filing in India entitled First Information Report, discussed
more fully below, KHOBRAGADE acknowledged that she had agreed to pay the Victim only
30,000 rupees per month, contrary to her representations to U.S. authorities. Subsequently,
KHOBRAGADE and Relative-1 initiated legal proceedings in India against the Victim and the
Victim's husband. I A
LEGAL REQUIREMENTS FOR DIPLOMATS AND FOREIGN OFFICIALS WHO EMPLOY
8. KHOBRAGADE's decision to manufacture a fraudulent employment
agreement that complied with the requirements of U.S. law demonstrated clearly
KHOBRAGADE's knowledge of the applicable legal requirements. KHOBRAGADE had
access to applicable U.S. law and widely-available U.S. State Department guidance on the
requirements for obtaining an visa.2 Together, these sources, which are attached as Exhibits
A through D, make plain that:
a. The applicant for an A-3 domestic worker visa must be interviewed at
the U.S. Embassy and provide proof that the applicant will receive a fair wage sufficient to
financially support herself and comparable to that being offered in the area of employment in the
b. The applicant must submit an employment contract signed by both the
employer and employee that contains, among other things, provisions outlining the following:
i. the working hours, with the understanding that workers will
normally be required to work 35-40 hours per week;
ii. a minimum of one full day off each week; and
the hourly wage to be paid to the domestic employee, which
must be the greater of the minimum wage under U.S. Federal and state law, or the prevailing wage
for all working hours. It must also state that wages will be paid either weekly or biweekly by
check or electronic transfer to an account accessible by the employee, and that deductions shall not
be taken for lodging, medical care, medical insurance, travel, or meals. All overtime work must
be paid as required by U.S. local laws.
c. The employment contract must specifically state that the employer
agrees to abide by all Federal, State, and local laws in the United States, and that the domestic
worker's passport and visa will be in the sole possession of the domestic worker.
2 An A-3 visa allows the personal attendants, employees or servants of a principal A-1 or A-2 visa
holder (KHOBRAGADE held an A-pl visa, which is issued to a representative of a foreign
govemment traveling to the U.S. to engage in official business) to enter into the United States.
d. All foreign mission members employing domestic workers must
maintain for the duration of actual employment plus three years, a copy of the contract and proof of
wage payments, a record of daily and weekly hours worked, including any overtime, and a record
of any deductions made.
e. Domestic workers granted A-3 visas are entitled to fundamental rights
when employed in the U.S., including:
i. All applicable rights under Federal immigration, labor, and
ii. To be free of trafficking in persons, extortion, blackmail, and
worker exploitation; and
The right to seek redress in United States courts, and the right
to report abuse without retaliation.
9. In or about September 2012, KHOBRAGADE was living in India and planning
to relocate to New York, New York, to serve as Deputy Consul General for Political, Economic,
Commercial and Women's Affairs at the Consulate General of India.
10. To that end, on or about September 27, 2012, an electronic form DS-160, which
is a visa application, was submitted through the website for the U.S. Department of State's
Consular Electronic Application Center, for an A-1 visa for KHOBRAGADE. The visa
application for KHOBRAGADE stated that no person assisted KHOBRAGADE in the preparation
of the application, which was electronically signed by the applicant, KHOBRAGADE, and filed
from a computer or digital device with an identified IP address (the "Khobragade IP Address").
1 1. In or about October 2012, KHOBRAGADE took steps to secure the services of a
live--in childcare provider and housekeeper to work at her home in New York, New York. Among
those steps, KHOBRAGADE interviewed the Victim, who also was living in India at the time, as a
candidate for the job. At KHOBRAGADE's request, the Victim provided her passport and
reference letters. The next day, the Victim and the Victim's husband met KHOBRAGADE and a
relative of KHOBRAGADE ("Relative--2") at one of KHOBRAGADE's homes in India (the
"Khobragade India Residence"), during which time KHOBRAGADE interviewed the Victim for
KHOBRAGADE AGREED TO TERMS OF EMPLOYMENT EOR THE VICTIM THAT SHE
KNEW VIOLATED U.S. LAWS, INCLUDING PAYING FAR LESS THAN THE REQUIRED
12. KHOBRAGADE told the Victim that KHOBRAGADE was seeking to hire a
child care provider who also could handle additional household work at her home in New York.
Relative--2 told the Victim that she would work Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. until 12:30
and from 6:30 until 8:30 pm (which amounts to 7.5 hours per day, 5 days per week, for a total
of 37.5 hours per week), and sometimes half a day on Saturday (for a total of 41 .5 hours per week).
Relative--2 told the Victim that she would have Sundays off and would not be required to work
13. Initially, KHOBRAGADE offered to pay the Victim just 20,000 rupees per
month, which amounted to approximately $3 82.04 per month. KHOBRAGADE then offered to
pay the Victim 25,000 rupees per month, which amounted to approximately $469 per month. In a
subsequent discussion, however, an oral agreement was reached to pay the Victim 30,000 rupees
per month, which amounted to approximately $573 per month. For a 40-hour work week, that
would amount to approximately $3.33 per hour. For a 72-hour work week, that would amount to
approximately $1.85 per hour. And for a 94 to 109 hour work week (which, as described below,
is what the Victim often worked for KHOBRAGADE), that would amount to between $1.22 and
$1.42 per hour. At no time was the Victim told that KHOBRAGADE would make any
deductions from the Victim's salary.
14. KHOBRAGADE told the Victim that KHOBRAGADE would apply for a
passport for the Victim through the Indian Ministry of External Affairs. The Victim gave
KHOBRAGADE her personal Indian passport (which, as described below, KHOBRAGADE
never returned to the Victim). KHOBRAGADE told the Victim to expect a call from the United
States Embassy in India (the Embassy").
KHOBRAGADE COMPLETES AND SUBMITS THE VISA APPLICATION
15. On or about October 15, 2012, an electronic form DS-160 was submitted
through the website for the U.S. Department of State' Consular Electronic Application Center, for
an A-3 visa for the Victim. The A-3 application for the Victim (the "Victim's Visa Application")
indicated that the KHOBRAGADE assisted in the preparation, and that the Victim's Visa
Application was submitted from a computer or digital device assigned the Khobragade IP Address.
16.. In a section entitled "Temporary Work Visa," the Victim's Visa Application
asked for the Victim's income." KHOBRAGADE entered $4,500 for
income," a figure that did not match any actual income figure. It was neither the
wages that KHOBRAGADE had agreed to pay the Victim,(about $573 per month), nor
the Victim' wage that KHOBRAGADE falsely represented to the U.S. Embassy through
the fraudulent employment contract described below (which provided for a wage based
on a rate of $9.75 per hour). Nor did the $4500 figure reflect KHOBRAGADE's
income, which was considerably higher given her salary, cost of living stipend, and income from
her real estate holdings in India.
KHOBRAGADE CREATES A FAKE EMPLOYMENT CONTRACT TO BE PRESENTED TO
THE U.S. EMBASSY
17. On or about November 1, 2012, the Victim appeared at the U.S. Embassy to be
interviewed in connection with the Victim's Visa Application. A U.S. Embassy employee told
the Victim she could not be interviewed until she returned with the necessary contract.
18. Knowing that the actual arrangement between KHOBRAGADE and the Victim
violated U.S. laws, KHOBRAGADE created a fraudulent employment contract (the "Fake
Employment Contract") and had the Victim execute it. KHOBRAGADE also executed the Fake
Employment Contract. A copy of the Fake Employment Contract is attached hereto as Exhibit E.
19. KHOBRAGADE provided the Fake Employment Contract to the Victim so that
the Victim could present it during the Victim's interview at the U.S. Embassy. Both in form and i
in substance, the Fake Employment Contract tracked the requirements set forth in the U.S. State
Department's public guidance and in the diplomatic notes circulated on this subject.
20. The parties to the Fake Employment Contract were "Dr. Devyani Khobragade
(Deputy Consul General -- CGI--NY) (hereinafter referred to as the Employer)" and the Victim
"(hereinafter referred to as the Employee)?'
21. The Fake Employment Contract described the scope of employment as follows:
"The Employee will go to the U.S. with the Employer as a domestic employee. The Employer
agrees to employ the Employee at or in connection with the Employer's residence in the
position(s) of housekeeper and babysitter."
22. Because it was created by KHOBRAGADE solely to deceive the U.S. Embassy
during the Victim's interview, it included false statements that made it seem as if
KHOBRAGADE's arrangement with the Victim would comply with applicable U.S. laws, when
in fact, KHOBRAGADE knew her real arrangement with the Victim would not. Among other
things, the Fake Employment Contract included the following provisions:
a. I "The Employee will be paid wages at the prevailing or minimum wage
rate as required by law, whichever is greater. The expected hourly salary in the U.S. would be
These statements were false. As noted above, the actual wage KHOBRAGADE had
agreed to pay the Victim would amount to between over $1 an hour (for 109 hours per
week) to over $3 an hour (for 40 hours per week), an illegally low wage under U.S. laws.
b. "The normal number of hours per week shall be 40 hours." The hours
were set forth as follows: off on Sundays, Monday through Friday from 7am to 12pm and
6:30pm-8:30pm, Saturday from 8am to 1pm. These statements were false. As discussed below,
KHOB GRAGADE required the Victim to work extremely long hours and, at least in the beginning
phase of her employment, to work seven days a week.
c. "Wages shall be paid biweekly by electronic fund transfer to the
Employee's bank account. Copies of pay records will be made available without charge to the
Employee'; These statements were false. As discussed below, the Victim was paid
not biweekly, by electronic fund transfer from Relative--l to the Victim's bank account in India.
Separately, KHOBRAGADE made small cash payments to the Victim, which were deducted from
the Victim's salary. KHOBRAGADE did not provide or make available to the Victim paystubs
or any other pay records.
d. "The Employee shall be provided a minimum of at least one full day
off each week, which day(s) will normally be Sunday. This statement was false. As discussed
below, for the first few months in the U.S., KHOBRAGADE had the Victim work seven days a
week, and even after that, made her work for part of the day on Sunday.
e. "In addition, the Employee will be provided time-off from work, as
follows . . . Holidays (With Pay): 7; Sick Days (With Pay): 7; Vacation Days (With Pay): This
statement was false. KHOBRAGADE did not give the Victim any holidays, sick days, or
vacation days. Indeed, on two occasions when the Victim became ill, the Victim was not given a
sick day. On one occasion, the Victim had to ask to see a doctor several times before
KHOBRAGADE relented. KHOBRAGADE told the Victim not to get sick because it was
f. "The Employer agrees to abide by all Federal, state, and local laws in
the This statement was false. KHOBRAGADE knew that her arrangement with the
Victim, including the extremely low pay, violated U.S. laws.
g. "The Employee's passport and visa will be in the sole possession of the
Employee." This statement was false. KHOBRAGADE took possession of the Victim's
personal passport during their negotiations and, despite several requests, never returned it to the
23. The Fake Employment Contract is initialed on the first page with the
handwritten initials and the handwritten date 11/ 1 1, and is also initialed on the first page by
the Victim. The second and final page of the Fake Employment Contract bears the signatures of
KHOBRAGADE, the Victim, and two witnesses.
24. KHOBRAGADE told the Victim that the Fake Employment Contract was a
mere formality in order to get the visa, and she coached the Victim to lie to the U.S. official in her
interview at the U.S. Embassy. Specifically, KHOBRAGADE told the Victim that the Victim
would be questioned about the terms of the Fake Employment Contract at her interview, and that
the Victim should lie and say that the Victim would be paid $9.75 per hour (as described above,
domestic workers in New York were required to be paid the prevailing hourly wage of $9.74 per
hour at the time). KHOBRAGADE instructed the Victim to lie and not say anything about
actually being paid only 30,000 rupees per month. KHOBRAGADE also instructed the Victim to
say that the Victim would work 40 hours per week, and that the Victim's duty hours would be 7
a.m. to 12:30 and 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
FRAUD CAUSES THE ISSUANCE OF A VISA FOR THE VICTIM
25. On or about November 14, 2012, the Victim appeared at the U.S. Embassy in
connection with the Victim's Visa Application, provided the Fake Employment Contract to the
U.S. Embassy employee (the "Embassy Employee"), and as instructed by KHOBRAGADE,
represented that the Victim understood that she would make $9.75 per hour working as a domestic
helper in the U.S.
26. Based on the Fake Employment Contract, the Victim' statements as coached by
KHOBRAGADE, and the content of the Victim's Visa Application, the Embassy Employee
processed the Victim's Visa Application.
27. Notably, the Embassy Employee would not have been authorized to process the
Victim's Visa Application absent an employment contract that complied with the requirements of
9 FAM 41.21 and 41.22, as set forth in Exhibit C, including the commitment to pay the A-3 Visa
applicant at least the minimum or prevailing wage and the provision that normal working hours
would be limited to 40 hours per week.
28. On or about November 15, 2012, and as a direct result of KHOBRAGADE's
fraud, including her creation of the Fake Employment Contract, the Victim received an A--3 visa.
THE TRUE EMPLOYMENT CONTRACT WITH ILLEGAL TERMS OF EMPLOYMENT
UNDER U.S. LAWS
29. On or about November 24, 2012, KHOBRAGADE and the Victim were
scheduled to take the same flight from India to New York, which was scheduled to depart India at
approximately 1:30 a.m. Shortly before leaving for the airport in the evening of November 23,
2012, KHOBRAGADE called the Victim to tell the Victim to come to the Khobragade India
Residence. Upon arriving at the Khobragade India Residence, KHOBRAGADE told the Victim
that the Victim needed to sign another employment contract (the "True Employment Contract"),
which contained the terms that the Victim and KHOBRAGADE had verbally agreed to in October
2012. A copy of the True Employment Contract is attached as Exhibit F.
30. The True Employment Contract is dated November 23, 2012, and appears to be
an enlarged and edited version of the Fake Employment Contract, with many of the provisions
specifically removed and modified.
31. The parties to the True Employment Contract were identical to those in the Fake
Employment Contract: "Dr. Devyani Khobragade (Deputy Consul General CGI-NY)
(hereinafter referred to as the Employer)" and the Victim "(hereinafter referred to as the
32. The scope of the Employee's duties was also identical to the Fake Employment
Contract: "The Employee will go to the U.S. with the Employer as a domestic employee. The
Employer agrees to employ the Employee at or in connection with the Employer's residence in the
position(s) of housekeeper and babysitter."
33. KHOBRAGADE, however, specifically changed the wage provision. Unlike
the Fake Employment Contract, which contained a lawful wage of $9.75 per hour,
KHOBRAGADE changed that term in the True Employment Contract to the following unlawful
provision: "The Employee will be paid an expected salary of Rs. 25,000 per month with
an additional Rs. 5,000 for overtime, i.e. work on Sunday, after hours and for parties, etc. The
maximum salary per month including the overtime allowance will not exceed Rs. 30,000 per
month." As stated above, 30,000 rupees would amount to approximately $3.33 per hour for a
40-hour work week or between $1.22 and $1.42 per hour for a 94 to 109 hour work week (which,
as described below, was not unusual for the Victim). And because the agreement provided only
for 5,000 rupees (included in the 30,000 rupee total) for an unlimited amount of overtime, the
Victim was not eligible for any additional payment regardless of how much additional overtime
34. For the True Employment Contract, KHOBRAGADE also removed from the
Fake Employment Contract the provision that provided: "The normal number of work hours per
week shall be 40 hours, including the following normal work hours:" off on Sundays, Monday
through Friday from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 Saturday from 8 a.m. to p.m.
Instead, with respect to hours, the only term KHOBRAGADE included in the True Employment
Contract was: "The Employee shall be provided a minimum of at least one full day off each
week, which day(s) will normally be Sunday."
35. For the True Employment Contract, KHOBRAGADE also removed provisions
about time off from work, means or method of payment, holidays, sick days, and vacation days, all
in violation of the U.S. State Department requirements and U.S. labor laws.
36. Significantly, for the True Employment Contract, KHOBRAGADE specifically
removed the representation in the Fake Employment Contract, as required by the U.S. State
Department, that "The Employer agrees to abide by all Federal, state, and local laws in the
37. The second and final page of the True Employment Contract bears the
signatures of KHOBRAGADE, the Victim, two witnesses, and a notary public.
38. Shortly thereafter, on or about November 24, 2012, KHOBRAGADE and the
Victim flew to New York. The True Employment Contract was concealed from and never
submitted to U.S. authorities.
KHOBRAGADE ILLEGALLY UNDERPAID AND EXPLOITED THE VICTIM
39. Prior to the Victim's commencement of her employment for KHOBRAGADE,
the Victim had provided KHOBRAGADE with the Victim's personal passport.
KHOBRAGADE never returned the Victim's passport. On one occasion, in response to the
Victim's question about where her personal passport was, KHOBRAGADE told the Victim that
after the Victim completed her three-year term of employment working for KHOBRAGADE, the
Victim would then get her personal passport back. As described above, employers are not
permitted to keep an employee's passport under any circumstances.
40. During the Victim' employment for KHOBRAGADE, the Victim's work hours
typically began at approximately 6:30 a.m. and ended between 9:30 p.m. and midnight, six days
per week, plus approximately 4 hours on.Sundays (during the first two months, as described
below, the Victim worked a full day on Sundays). In other words, the Victim was required to
work approximately 94 to 109 hours per week, with limited breaks for meals or personal calls.
The Victim was routinely called upon at all hours to perform her duties, which included caring for
KHOBRAGADE's two children, cooking, and cleaning home in New York,
New York (the "Khobragade U.S. Residence").
41. For approximately the first two months of the Victim's employment, the Victim
worked seven days a Week. KHOBRAGADE told the Victim that she would not have any days
off because the Victim was paid 30,000 rupees per month, which covered overtime hours. After
about two months, the Victim requested to be given some time off on Sundays to attend church.
KHOBRAGADE permitted the Victim to take time off on Sundays from approximately 10:30 a.m.
to 5:30 or 6:30 only on days when KHOBRAGADE's husband was home. In those
instances, the Victim was required to prepare all meals for Sundays in advance, and on Sundays
when the Victim returned to the Khobragade U.S. Residence, the Victim was required to work
until 9:30 or 10:00 p.m.
42. Beginning in or about February 2013, the Victim told KHOBRAGADE on
several occasions that the Victim wished to end the Victim's employment and return to India
because the Victim felt she was being mistreated. KHOBRAGADE denied her requests.
43. In or about June 2013, the Victim went to KHOBRAGADE's office at the
Indian consulate and said that she could no longer work for KHOBRAGADE because she was
unhappy with her low salary, long hours, and harsh work conditions and wanted to go home. The
Victim also asked KHOBRAGADE to return the Victim's personal passport so that she could
return to India. Once again, KHOBRAGADE denied the Victim's request to end her employment
and her request for the retum of her personal passport. The Victim, without the financial
wherewithal to purchase a return ticket to India, and without her personal passport which had been
withheld by KHOBRAGADE, could not return home to India without consent.
The Victim then asked if she could live outside the Khobragade U.S. Residence, and work for
KHOBRAGADE from 7 a.m. to 7 but KHOBRAGADE again said no, stating that the Victim
could not afford to do so on a salary of 30,000 rupees per month. The Victim then asked to be
paid $9.75 per hour, as stated in the Fake Employment Contract, but KHOBRAGADE refiised and
became angry, saying that that agreement was only a fonnality created for the purpose of showing
the U.S. Embassy Employee. I
44. After KHOBRAGADE rejected all of the Victim's requests to end her
employment with KHOBRAGADE, have her personal passport returned, and retum to her family
in India, and having no power or financial ability to return home to India without
KHOGRAGADE's assistance, yet unwilling to continue working under the grueling conditions of
her employment, on or about June 22, 2013, the Victim left the Khobragade U.S. Residence and
did not return. The Victim ultimately tumed to a non--profit organization that supports human
trafficking victims for assistance.
ESCALATING EFFORTS BY KHOBRAGADE AND OTHERS TO SILENCE AND
INTIMIDATE THE VICTIM AND HER FAMILY AND LIE TO INDIAN AUTHORITIES AND
45. Beginning almost immediately after the Victim fled the Mission and her
employment, KHOBRAGADE and others took steps to prevent the Victim and her family from
communicating with lawyers and authorities outside of India about the experience she had
Working for KHOBRAGADE.
46. Between June and August 2013, KHOBRAGADE and Relative--1 called the
Victim' husband in Delhi, India multiple times to pressure him to locate and disclose the Victim'
location. From July through November 2013, KHOBRAGADE took steps to intimidate the
Victim and the Victim's family and to prevent them from initiating any proceedings against
KHOBRAGADE. These steps included taking legal action and causing the Victim's family to be
contacted by law enforcement, Relative-1, and others in India.
47. On or about July 8, 2013, the Victim sought the assistance at an office providing
legal representation on immigration issues (the "Immigration Office") in New York. At a
meeting at the Immigration Office, KHOBRAGADE and another individual
demanded that the Victim sign a document (the "Document") that was folded so that the Victim
could not read its contents. The Victim refused to sign the Document after an employee of the
Immigration Office reviewed the Document and told the Victim that the Document stated, among
other things, that the Victim stole from KHOBRAGADE. The Victim refused to sign the
Document because the statement that the Victim stole from KHOBRAGADE was false. When
the Victim asked KHOBRAGADE what the Victim stole, KHOBRAGADE responded that the
Victim should ask the police.
48. On or about November 19, 2013, based on a public complaint entitled First
Information Report (the filed in July 2013 by KHOBRAGADE, an arrest warrant was
issued in India charging the Victim with extortion, cheating, and participating in a conspiracy. In
the FIR, which is described more fully below, KHOBRAGADE acknowledged that the
agreed-upon salary for the Victim was 30,000 rupees per month, not the salary based on an hourly
wage of $9.75 as represented to the U.S. Embassy at the time of the visa application. The FIR is
attached as Exhibit G.
49. On or about July 2, 2013, KHOBRAGADE submitted the FIR to the Indian
government against the Victim and the Victim's Husband for fraud, willful deceit, harassment and
extortion. In the FIR, KHOBRAGADE stated, in substance and in part, the following:
a. "[The Victim] will come to New York to take care of
household work for salary of Rs 30000/-- and arrangement of stay
b. On June 18, 2013, the Victim went to KHOBRAGADE's office at
Consulate General of India and requested, among other things, to live outside the Khobragade U.S.
Residence. In sum and substance, KHOBRAGADE acknowledged denying the Victim's request
to live outside of the Mission, which is the Victim's right under U.S. law.
c. After the Victim left KHOBRAGADE's home, KHOBRAGADE
questioned the Victim's husband, who stated that he was not aware of her whereabouts. After
searching the Victim's room, KHOBRAGADE learned that the Victim had taken most of her
belongings and her official passport. KHOBRAGADE did not claim that the Victim had stolen
anything from KHOBRAGADE.
50. KHOBRAGADE alleged that the Victim's plan from the outset was to use her
position with KHOBRAGADE to gain entry into the U.S. even though the Victim -- rather than
fleeing KHOBRAGADE's home upon arrival -- remained in KHOBRAGADE's home for more
than six months. On or about August 19, 2013, KHOBRAGADE filed the Khobragade Motion in
the High Court of New Delhi. In the Khobragade Motion, KHOBRAGADE falsely stated that a
contract dated November 23, 2012 was signed by the parties and the terms of the Victim's
employment for KHOBRAGADE were specifically enumerated therein. KHOBRAGADE then
attached an unsigned and undated version of the Fake Employment Contract and represented that it
was a "Copy of Contract dated 23.11.2012 signed between and the [Victim]."
But in fact, the Fake Employment Contract had been signed by the parties on November 11, 2012,
and it did not actually govem the employer--employee relationship between the parties.
51. KHOBRAGADE did not provide to the High Court aicopy of the True
Employment Contract signed on November 23, 2012, which as described above, provided that the
Victim would be paid only a salary of 30,000 rupees and lacked other legally required
protections. But in direct contradiction to the claim that the terms of the Fake Employment
Contract (including a salary of $9.75 an hour) govemed the Victim's employment,
KHOBRAGADE did attach to the Khobragade Motion the FIR which stated that the Victim would
be paid "a salary of 30,000 rupees."
52. In or about November 2012, in the Southem District of New York and
elsewhere, DEVYANI KHOBRAGADE, the defendant, willfully and knowingly did make under
oath, and under penalty of perjury under Title 28, United States Code, Section 1746, and did
subscribe as true, a false statement with respect to a material fact in an application, affidavit, and
other document required by the immigration laws and regulations prescribed thereunder, and did
present such application, affidavit, and other document which contained such false statement and
which failed to contain any reasonable basis in law or fact, to wit, KHOBRAGADE caused to be
submitted to the U.S. Department of State an employment contract that KHOBRAGADE knew to
contain materially false and fraudulent statements, which contract was submitted in support of a
visa application filed by KHOBRAGADE for another individual.
(Title 18, United States Code, Sections 1546(a) and 2.)
The Grand Jury further charges:
53. In or about November 2012, DEVYANI KHOBRAGADE, the defendant, in a
matter within the jurisdiction of the executive branch of the Government of the United States,
willfully and knowingly, did falsify, conceal, and cover up by trick, scheme, and device material
facts, and made materially false, fictitious, and fraudulent statements and representations, to wit,
KHOBRAGADE caused to be submitted to the U.S. Department of State an employment contract
that KHOBRAGADE knew to contain materially false and fraudulent statements, which contract
was submitted in support of a visa application filed by KHOBRAGADE for another individual,
and KHOBRAGADE caused another individual to make statements KHOBRAGADE knew to be
materially false, fictitious, and fraudulent, to an employee of the United States Embassy in New
Delhi, India, in support of the same visa application.
(Title 18, United States Code, Sections 1001 and 2.)
United States Attorney
Form No. (Ed. 9-25-58)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
(18 1001,1546, and 2).
United States Attomey.