A MAN has been convicted over his part in a sham marriage and warned to expect a jail term sentence.
Jason Procter, 40, had insisted to a jury that he had been besotted with his Vietnamese wife and that he believed it had been a genuine wedding, with nothing to suggest he was being tricked, conned or duped.
A jury yesterday convicted him on a unanimous verdict of a charge of assisting unlawful immigration to a member state following a trial at Preston Crown Court.
He and a beautician called Le Thi Le Quyen, who was studying in Preston, had wed at Blackburn register office in May 2010 after meeting the previous summer.
After the ceremony, they went for a meal and spent their wedding night at his flat on Princess Street, Blackburn.
Later on they saw each other most weekends, he said because she was a student and also had a part time job.
In his evidence to the court he denied having been paid to marry her.
He accepted now that his bride had pulled the wool over his eyes.
Procter's case has been adjourned to January 30th when a number of other people linked to the overall investigation, who have pleaded guilty, are due to be sentenced on January 30.
They are Kevin Donnelley, 34, of Thwaites Road, Oswaldtwistle, Amanda Nolan, 28 of Windsor Road, Blackburn, Denny Wallace, 21, of Spring Street, Blackburn and Gemma Nelson, 28 of Thwaites Road Oswaldtwistle.
Defence barrister Mr Mark Stuart said his client was aware that it was very likely a custodial sentence would follow.
Procter was remanded on bail by Judge Michael Byrne who told him: "All sentencing options will be available to me when I sentence you, but the reality is this - you must expect a custodial sentence.”