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Woman pleads guilty to defrauding immigrants

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SEATTLE (AP) — Federal officials say a former Mercer Island woman has pleaded guilty to wire fraud in connection with stealing money from immigrants.

Department of Justice officials said in a news release that 61-year-old Dalia Ivette Singh, who is also known as Dalia Pena of Clearwater, Florida, made the plea in U.S. District Court Wednesday.

Officials say she defrauded more than 40 immigrants from the Caribbean and Latin America from 2008 to 2011.

Singh reportedly charged some families up to $36,000, claiming she had a contact in the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services who could provide immigrants with legal status in the United States. Officials say no such contact existed.

Under a plea agreement, Singh will pay restitution of nearly $223,000. She will be sentenced in January.