Nationwide Initiative Targets Immigration Scams

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Federal and state officials from across the U.S. gathered in Washington, D.C. Thursday to address immigration services scams.

Authorities want to crackdown on phony lawyers, or "notarios" offering their services to undocumented Hispanics seeking help obtaining American citizenship.

These con artists have been are scamming immigrants out of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

"We have people who are nothing more than notary publics here in the U.S. who are posing as a special kind of lawyer from Latin America as though they can help people through the immigration process here," Texas Attorney General Greg Abbot said.

"It's nothing more than a fraud and a scam. And so we're trying to shut down these illegal immigration fraud scams," he added.

These notarios aren't operating just along the southern border, but in cities all across America.

"We are dedicated to protecting vulnerable immigrants from those who seek to exploit them," vowed U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Director Alejandro Mayorkas said Thursday.

"Through our sustained outreach, enforcement and education efforts, and our close collaboration with our federal, state and local partners, we will provide the communities we serve with the help needed to combat this pernicious problem," he said.

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