A state fund has been set up to reimburse immigrants who were victims of fraudulent nonprofits.
The state attorney general's office says that two organizations run by Eduardo Juarez made promises of citizenship to immigrants who gave them money.
Juarez is a former contributor to El Diario and NY1 Noticias.
His organizations, The International Immigrants Foundation and the International Professional Association, are also accused of engaging in illegal law practices.
"This was a really serious case of fraud, there were people who paid—one person paid $18,000, who was actually eligible for a green card but because they didn't really provide legal services he missed his opportunity," said State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.
"Very happy, very pleased, and thank God for justice. Very happy. Not just for me—for a lot of people, a lot of victims," said fraud victim Orlando Castillo.
The attorney general's office has made $2.2 million available for victims of the scam.
Both companies have been shut down.
Victims should go to nylag.org/ipa for information on reimbursement.