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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, February 6, 2004

Kaua'i adoptions facilitator pleads not guilty to visa fraud

Advertiser Staff

Lauryn Galindo, the Kaua'i adoptions facilitator accused of buying Cambodian children and passing them off as orphans, pleaded not guilty to visa fraud charges in Seattle's U.S. District Court.

A trial is scheduled for March 15, but Tom Hillier, Galindo's federal public defender, said a motion for a four-month continuance has been filed and he expects the trial will be postponed until June.

The Hanalei woman was indicted on four counts of visa fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit visa fraud between January 1997 and January 1999. If convicted, she could be sentenced to five years for conspiracy and up to 10 years for each count of visa fraud. She also could face a fine of up to $250,000 for each count.

Galindo's sister, Lynn Devin, who runs Seattle International Adoptions Inc., pleaded guilty in December to committing visa fraud by falsifying documents to get U.S. visas for Cambodian children.

Galindo, 52, arranged hundreds of adoptions through her sister's firm and other adoption agencies. Federal officials have said they are not pursuing reversals in the adoption of Cambodian children already in the United States.