The report claims that the Slovenia native, 46, was paid for 10 modeling assignments worth $20,056 between September 10 and October 15, 1996, according to accounting ledgers, contracts and documents obtained by the AP. The jobs reportedly included work for clients including Fitness magazine and Bergdorf Goodman department store.
Melania first came to the U.S. from Slovenia on a B1/B2 visitor visa on August 27, 1996. Nearly two months later, on October 18, she obtained an H-1B work visa, New York immigration lawyer Michael J. Wildes said in a statement in September.
The former model, who officially became a U.S. citizen in 2006, tweeted the letter from Wildes, stating, “With 100 percent certainty, I correctly went through the legal process when arriving in the USA.”
The AP reported that Melania was allowed to look for work in the U.S. on her B1/B2 visitor visa, but was not permitted to perform paid work. As a result, the income she earned from the 10 modeling jobs between September 10 and October 15 were “outside the bounds of her visa,” the news outlet noted.
Wildes, who reviewed the ledgers provided to the AP, said the “documents, which have not been verified, do not reflect our records including corresponding passport stamps.” He did not elaborate further or answer the AP’s additional questions. The site also reached out to a Trump campaign spokeswoman.
The reports of Melania’s work visa come just days before her husband, Republican presidential candidate Donald, faces off against Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton on Election Day. During Donald’s campaign, he has taken a hard stance on immigration laws and illegal immigrants.
Earlier in the week, Melania spoke about her decision to come to the U.S. during a rally for her husband in Berwyn, Pennsylvania.
“As a young entrepreneur, I wanted to follow my dream to a place where freedom and opportunity were in abundance,” she said on Thursday, November 3. “So of course, I came here [to the United States]. Living and working in America was a true blessing, but I wanted something more. I wanted to be an American.”
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