St. Louis feds: Lawyer offered $36K to marry

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Federal officials say a married lawyer offered an engaged teacher $36,000 to marry the lawyer's Ukranian lover so she wouldn't have to leave when her student visa expired.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch ( ) reports that the deal came crashing down when the teacher's old fiancée went to authorities.

Now federal officials in St. Louis have charged the Ukrainian woman, 38-year-old Dar'ya Chernova, with attempting to falsely procure naturalization and lying to an immigration official. She pleaded not guilty last month. There's no indication in court records that the teacher or lawyer face charges.

Authorities say the lawyer fathered both of Chernova's children and witnessed her marry the teacher in March 2005. The lawyer then represented the teacher in a bankruptcy and child custody case involving the jilted fiancée.

Information from: St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

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