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Wall Street Journal -- Miriam Jordan

Federal agents Tuesday executed search warrants at several Southern California sites they say are connected to three multimillion-dollar birth-tourism businesses that enabled thousands of Chinese women to travel here and return home with infants born as U.S. citizens.

The investigations are likely to culminate in the biggest federal criminal case ever against the booming “anchor baby” industry, according to U.S. authorities. The search warrants cite suspected visa fraud, tax evasion and harboring illegal immigrants, among other charges.

Agents seized records from apartments where, they said, Chinese women on tourist visas stay before and after delivering babies, as well as from residences of U.S.-based individuals who they allege run three separate anchor-baby operations in Los Angeles, Orange and San Bernardino counties. The U.S. Homeland Security and Treasury departments, as well as the Internal Revenue Service, are conducting criminal investigations of these individuals, according to three affidavits reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

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Birthright Citizenship

Updated: Wed, Mar 18th 2015 @ 1:50pm EDT