Recently discovered immigration records for Representative George Santos’ mother appear to contradict the freshman Republican’s repeated claim that she was present at the World Trade Center during the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
Records indicate that Fátima Devolder said she was in Brazil between 1999 and early 2003 and therefore not in New York City when the attacks took place. CNN obtained the records, first reported by The Forward, from genealogy researcher Alex Calzareth, who received them from a Freedom of Information Act request.
While in Brazil in 2003, Devolder indicated on a form that he had not been to the United States since leaving in 1999. Devolder also filed paperwork in Brazil in 2001, just months before the September 11 attacks, saying that his green card it had been stolen.
Representatives for Santos did not return CNN’s requests for comment.
Santos has repeatedly claimed that his mother was at the World Trade Center on 9/11 and has said the incident played a role in her death from cancer.
In a December 17, 2021 radio interview on “The Voice of Reason with Andy Hooser,” Santos said that his mother was “caught in the ash cloud” on September 11 and that she didn’t apply for financial aid because she didn’t want to take money from first responders.
“She was in the south tower and managed to escape. She was caught in the ash cloud. My mother fought cancer until she died,” said Santos.
Santos has previously stated that his mother was a finance executive, although that description has since been removed from his website. Records obtained by CNN show that she listed her jobs as a housekeeper or house help.
Devolder also listed her parents – Santos’ grandparents – as born in Brazil, again undermining his claim that his maternal grandparents fled the Holocaust.
Santos has refused to leave Congress, despite facing mounting legal questions and growing calls for his resignation for lying widely about his resume.
Listen to the Navy veteran who was allegedly deceived by Santos
He is already facing a federal investigation led by New York prosecutors who are looking into his finances. And in a separate issue, CNN reported that law enforcement authorities in Brazil will reinstate the fraud charges against Santos. Prosecutors said they will seek a “formal response” from Santos relating to a checkbook stolen in 2008 after police suspended an investigation into him because they could not find it for nearly a decade.
In an interview last month with the New York Post, Santos denied being charged with any crime in Brazil, saying “I am not a criminal here – not here, not in Brazil, not in any jurisdiction in the world. Absolutely not. This did not happened.”
Santos admitted to stealing a checkbook from a man who was with his mother to buy clothes and shoes in 2008, according to documents obtained by CNN.
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