Brampton Man Lost Life Savings After Scam

A man from Ontario was left with just $9 after he was scammed of his life savings which are worth more than $8,200. Ganesh Khatry of Brampton Ontario was tricked into handing over his savings to scammers. He has been saving since he moved to Canada from Nepal 3 years ago in search of a better future.

Savings Gone

Khatry got a job at his local Walmart where he worked in shifts for years to pay his rent and build his savings. A family friend, Eliza Rizal, spoke to CTV News Toronto because Khatry does not speak fluent English. According to the family friend, Khatry received a call from someone claiming to be the Brampton Police on October 1. He was told that his bank accounts and his social insurance number were compromised, and he was worried that he would lose all his savings. He was told by the fraudsters that his compromised information may have been used to open multiple bank accounts used as avenues for money laundering and drug trafficking. Furthermore, he was told that withdrawing all his money and depositing it in a Bitcoin account will keep it safe.

Khatry was confused about the above and asked if he could talk to his friend but the caller insisted that since fraud was discovered involving his bank accounts and social insurance number, that it would be a mistake to tell anyone because it would compromise his safety. Khatry then proceeded to withdraw all his money from his two bank accounts, withdrawing about $4,000 from each account to deposit it to a Bitcoin machine believing that by doing so, his money will be safeguarded until the fake police can provide him with a new social insurance card the following day. Khatry realized that he was scammed the following morning.

Authorities Informed

After realizing what happened, Khatry immediately contacted Peel Regional Police but there was nothing law enforcement could do except tell him that his money was already gone. Note that money sent via cryptocurrency is nearly impossible to trace. Peel Regional Police spokesperson says that they are currently investigating the case with the help of their Fraud Bureau.

Lasting Trauma

Rizal shares that Khatry has barely left his room since he was scammed and he’s currently being supported financially by his friends, adding that Khatry is depressed and feels ashamed about falling for a scam.

Rizal started a GoFundMe page for Khatry to help him raise part of the funds that he has lost. She says that they hope to help him raise money to help him overcome what happened more so that falling for a scam is never the victim’s fault and that there is nothing to be ashamed of.

Avoid Bitcoin Scams

Peel Regional Police issued a warning in June to warn people about the surge in Bitcoin scams wherein fraudsters identify themselves as police officers to fool more victims. The police say that fraudsters can manipulate technology these days to make it seem like the phone call is from the actual government agency being mimicked and it is easy for anyone to fall victim to these manipulations.

Avoiding Bitcoin scams can be challenging because the people behind them take advantage of fear and misdirection to make victims do what they want. It is important to keep yourself updated about common scams and try to exercise doubt when you receive calls or warnings claiming to be from the authorities. If you think that your data may have been compromised, you can contact us at Haywood Hunt to find out how you can protect yourself and know which of our private investigation services could be beneficial for you.

Brampton Man Arrested After Faking COVID-19 to Get Out of Work

A Brampton man faked having COVID-19 in order to get out of work. He has been charged after he falsely claimed contact with someone infected with the novel coronavirus earlier this week.

The Man Who Cried Corona

Peel police was contacted by a Brampton business owner around 9:15 a.m. Monday following an immediate shutdown after an employee claimed contact with a family member who is positive with COVID-19. After careful investigation, officers found out that the claim was a hoax orchestrated by the man to get off of work. To be clear, there is no one from the man’s family who was sick with the novel coronavirus or was exposed to it.

The Brampton man is 39-years-old and works at a small business. He was charged with public mischief and released on the promise that he will appear at a later scheduled date in a Brampton court.

More Fake COVID-19 Cases

This is not the first case of someone pretending to have COVID-19. A McDonald’s worker in Hamilton was charged after a fake positive COVID-19 test less than a week ago. Just last Friday, the 18-year-old woman faked a doctor’s note stating a confirmed positive COVID-19 result to not have to work at McDonald’s for her shift. The restaurant had to shut down as a result and people were also made to worry needlessly. She was charged with fraud under $5,000 as she made and used a forged document as well as mischief over $5,000 for causing the restaurant to shutdown operations.

Warning Against Faking a Coronavirus Infection

The world is facing serious health and economic threats from having to shutdown places in relation to the spread of COVID-19 infection. Once a person is suspected of having it, an immediate tracing of people he/she came in contact it will be done, using up already strained government resources. Places that he/she frequented will be disinfected and possibly shut down, causing a substantial loss in revenue plus spread of fear, panic, and worry.

The damages of a fake positive COVID-19 infection go beyond just money. A case of COVID-19 should not be treated as a joke as there are people who place their lives in danger and have lost their lives in the fight against it. It is not worth it to lose one’s job and face serious legal consequences just to get out of work for a day or a few days by faking a novel coronavirus infection.

Beware of Fake COVID-19 Claims

If you have heard that someone you know may be infected with COVID-19, it is best to stay calm and verify the information. Contacting the local authorities will help as well. If you know of any information that are related to the cases above, kindly contact 22 Division at 905-453-2121 ext.1233. Should you wish to leave information anonymously, contact Peel Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Are you a business owner who quickly needs to verify a claim of COVID-19 infection by your staff? Contact us at Haywood Hunt and we’ll see how we can help you avoid falling for fraud and possible COVID-19 scams with the use of our private investigation services.

 

Be Aware of These Ongoing Scams in Brampton and Mississauga

Scams do not pick a season. Most scams are ongoing no matter what time of the year and even when similar scams are already being investigated after discovery by law enforcement. This is especially true in Brampton and Mississauga and so Peel police are warning residents that there are several common and ongoing scams making the rounds in the region.

Scams to Watch Out For

4 common scams have been identified by Peel Regional Police’s Service Fraud Bureau. The scams are the ones commonly targeting residents of Mississauga and Brampton. They are:

  • Canada Revenue Agency Scam or CRA Scam, otherwise known as Emergency Scam or Police or Bank Employee Scam
  • Company Invoice Scam or Paycheque Redirect
  • Employment Scams
  • Rental Accommodation Fraud

The police said that the scams lined up above are the most prevalent according to their records and the ones that pose the most threat to residents because they persist.

Different Modes, Same Scams

Some scams, like the CRA scam or bank employee and police scam, simply have the same pattern but can take so many different forms, making people fall for them again and again because each scenario can seem so convincing. It can take the form of a bank employee pretending to want to fix an internal fraud, tricking the victim into disclosing personal details and then the scammer using those details to commit more fraud. It can also take the form of a call from someone pretending to be the police or the CRA giving a warning of arrest for an alleged missing payment. Some variations involve a caller pretending to be a relative of the victim or a lawyer saying that there has been a serious car accident and bail money is needed as soon as possible. The same scenarios play out, in which the victim is targeted and made to panic to be more malleable for manipulation. Victims are then told by the scammer to buy huge amounts of gift cards and forward the gift card information to scammers over the phone, or to make a cash deposit into a Bitcoin ATM.

As for Rental Accommodation Fraud, fake landlords target prospective renters on buy-and-sell websites and are asked for a deposit to make sure that the property to be rented is reserved for them. After sending the deposit payment, the rental property turns out to be unavailable or doesn’t exist at all.

Paycheque Redirect and Company Invoice Scams target businesses by sending fake invoices that look like they were from a legitimate employee or customer. The email address used is fraudulent and usually only discovered after payments were already maid via direct transfer to a new bank account under the scammers’ control.

Employment Scams target victims that are looking for work using online services. Scammers pose as a new employer and send the victim a cheque that the victim is instructed to en-cash and deposit to another account either using Interac e-transfer or a Bitcoin ATM. The cheque turns out fraudulent later and the victim has to cover the money sent.

Be Vigilant and Beware

Residents are reminded by Peel Police to never send e-transfers unless they are sure that they are dealing with a reputable service with a guarantee for loss-prevention. Depositing cheques from an unknown source and then transferring the money to another account is also a form of money laundering which has severe consequences. It is best to be vigilant and not very trusting of people online or calls from unverifiable sources.

If you think that you or someone you know maybe being targeted for a scam, be sure to contact the local authorities in your area for a report. If you’re concerned about finding out more and whether your information may have been compromised, contact us to avail of our private investigation services for fraud prevention.

 

Brampton Woman to Spend 2 Years in Jail for Posing as a Nurse

A woman from Brampton, Ontario who posed as a nurse and gave people cosmetic procedures that she wasn’t qualified to perform was sentenced to about 2 years of jail time. Her victims were left with lasting physical injuries.

Mounting Charges

Shiva Ashkani, a resident of Brampton, Ontario was found guilty of 8 charges committed against her former patients. Her charges include one count of fraud under $5,000, one count of aggravated assault, and 3 counts of assault with a weapon. She claimed to be a medical cosmetician and a registered nurse with decades of experience administering collagen injections and botox.

3 of Ashkani’s patients reported permanent scarring, agonizing pain, significant financial losses, and fear of contracting blood-borne diseases after undergoing Ashkani’s procedures.

Ashkani has a history of mental illness. She was sentenced by Superior Court Justice Alfred O’Marra to 2 years minus a day in jail and another 3 years of probation.

Prosecutors requested a 3.5 years jail sentence but Justice O’Marra felt that her mental illness should also be considered before passing a sentence.

Harsh Sentencing or Not Harsh Enough?

Justice O’Marra wrote in his March 28 sentencing decision that although Ashkani knowingly injected applied harmful material and injected substances that brought so much physical and psychological pain plus financial harm to her victims, he has to take into account that she needs access to treatment and continuing control and supervision in view of her mental illness.

Ashkani’s fraudulent cosmetics treatments were committed in 2015, 3 years after she was accused of assault with a weapon and aggravated assault after attacking her husband and leaving him with a ruptured spleen.

History of Fraud?

According to O’Marra, Ashkani began posting ads about her non-existent medical credentials in February 2015 on classified sites online. She claimed that she’s a registered nurse with 13 years of experience working with surgeons as well as has 21 years of experience as a medical cosmetician working in Toronto, Vancouver, and Beverly Hills, California.

The court also heard of a Toronto tanning salon that needed a registered nurse and hired Ashkani in 2015 after coming across her ad in July 2015. The court shared that Ashkani performed botched collagen and botox treatments on 2 women in the tanning salon. It was found out that one of the women, the site manager, fell ill after the injection and ended up with damaged skin as well as scarring. The victim had to spend more than $4,000 to help correct the damage. Ashkani threatened the woman with physical violence after the victim filed a complaint against her. The other victim had skin discolouration after Ashkani’s procedure.

The Cost of Fraud

There are more victims aside from the women mentioned above. Each victim had a harrowing experience and had to spend time and money just to try to correct the damage caused by Ashkani’s procedures. The psychological trauma and pain alone are unbearable.

Ashkani has been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder as well as bipolar disorder. She has a history of suicidal gesture according to the court. She was hospitalized after conviction and needed a psychiatric assessment before sentencing.

Frauds are everywhere. Even with today’s technology, quite a lot of people can still claim to be someone they’re not. It is best to do a background check before hiring potential employees. If you’re interested to undergo procedures, verify the credentials of the person who’ll be performing the procedures on you. Contact us if you need help with OSINT, looking to hire a private investigator, or want assistance with fraud prevention.

 

Brampton Restaurant Cheated Out of $4,600 by Point-of-Sale Terminal Thieves

A restaurant owner in Brampton was scammed out of $4,600 after some thieves switched her point-of-sale terminal and stole money by issuing refunds to themselves. The restaurant owner is at a bind because the payment company she uses thinks she is responsible.

A Dine and Dash Ploy Turned More Sinister

Thieves set up restaurant owner Sabena Coulter and she’s now out of $4,600. In November 2018, 3 male diners dined and left at Sabena Coulter’s restaurant after eating expensive meals. They came back after a few days to settle their bill at Fanzorelli. The Italian restaurant’s owner was relieved; however, it looks like that the thieves only used that opportunity to take a closer look at Fanzorelli’s point-of-service terminal.

In December last year, the trio came back to the restaurant to take Coulter’s point-of-service terminal and drop off a look-alike.  The scammers then quickly used the stolen terminal to steal money at Coulter’s expense. They’ve manipulated the terminal to get a series of refunds channeling money to themselves from Coulter’s merchant account.

In a matter of hours, the trio of scammers stole over $4,600 using 11 transactions and 5 different cards. The restaurant owner shared that the stolen amount is equivalent to a week of wages for her 17 part-time and full-time staff plus some other overhead like food. That is a lot of money lost for someone in the very competitive food industry.

Coulter added that she works really hard 7 days a week and has worked her way up from being a server in the restaurant prior to buying it from the previous owner.

Investigations are Going On

Peel Police is currently investigating after the restaurant owner contacted Peel Regional Police to let them know what happened. Coulter spoke as well with the multi-national company that handles her point-of-sale transactions, Global Payments. Global Payments proceeded to quiz Coulter whether her terminals are password-protected or not. She replied that she’s the only person with the code and was sure that she did everything within her means to protect her account. Global Payments is holding Coulter responsible for the loss.

Global Payment’s written statement says that they appreciate Coulter’s action going public about what happened and that they believe it is important to raise awareness. They also said that they’re investigating on their end and will take extra steps to prevent the same incidence happening to their other customers. As for now, they are working with law enforcement officials to help address the case.

Coulter was encouraged by a senior police detective to tell Global News about what happened after seeing her post on social media. Toronto Police reported a similar incident at a Scarborough restaurant in December but the thief disappeared with the point-of-sales device.

Coulter believes that Global Payments should take responsibility regarding what happened as she has no further control on her device to defend herself. She recently took steps to make her terminals a lot more difficult to steal.

Scams and fraud are nothing new in the restaurant business. Restaurant theft is quite common too. This is why it is important to take extra care in making sure that you are protected. If you need help checking possible weaknesses, our Private Investigation Services can help you identify your weak spots and set protective measures. Contact us to know more.

$1.25M Brampton Staff Fund Fraud to be Probed by Peel Police

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A Probe

The police investigation ensued after Regional Councillor John Sprovieri demanded an investigation once the issue about the secretive fund came to light.

Joshua Colley, the Sgt. of Peel Police says that the Fraud Bureau of the Peel Regional Police is currently investigating the matter. He says that he is unable to share further more so specific questions because that is prohibited for active investigations. All he can confirm is that the investigation is going back to 2009, the year the fraud allegedly started.

Back in June, Brampton councilors unanimously voted for the investigation to commence to hopefully uncover more of the fraud, including who approved the release of funds and the names of people who received payments. This was prompted as a reaction to an internal audit process.

In view of this, the spokesperson of the City of Brampton confirmed that police have already been assigned to investigate the case but they won’t share whether the investigation involved questioning the city staffers, saying that it is now a police matter and not under the city anymore.

Investigation Conflict?

It is to be noted that prior to the June vote, councilors thought that the Peel Regional Police will be under pressure to let go of the investigation because the local police budget passes through the regional council. Some councilors voiced out that they wanted the RCMP or perhaps the Ontario Provincial Police to lead the investigation instead of the Peel Regional Police to avoid any possible issues such as a potential conflict or the appearance of one from the people’s point of view.

In view of the above, Regional Councillor Martin Madeiros said that he has full confidence in the local police force although motioned for a request to have an external police investigation. He shares that a perception of conflict of interest cannot be avoided because some councilors have control over the police budget.

It is said that senior staff created the OPR program that did not inform elected officials about their role in paying hundreds of thousands a year to non-union employees, payments approved by them that can also include payments to themselves.

The audit investigation focused on the time period between January 2009 and May 2014. In this time period, payments handed to individual staff ranged between $123 to more than $95,000. 8 employees were the recipients of a sum totaling $316,000.

The report even allowed “favouritism” as one of the reasons to give an OPR bonus. The paper that listed this was not meant to be seen by the council nor the public. The report also stated that the most senior bureaucrats are fully aware of this.

Brampton auditors share that the secret bonuses were not allowed under relevant rules and that the OPR fell to mismanagement and misuse later. Senior staffs are clamoring for measures to be put in place so something like this does not happen again in the future.

Think something not quite right is going on under your nose? Let us help you find out the truth! Fraud like what happened here can happen to anyone. It is best to get the right information via private investigation before further action. Contact us today!

 

Discovery of Secret 1.25M Staff Fund Prompts Brampton Police Investigation

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Brampton’s audit committee was recently made aware of a million dollar secretive fund via report. Police are being asked to investigate following the discovery of a secret $1.25M staff fund that was given to non-union staff without the council’s knowledge. Brampton councilor John Sprovieri leads the demand for a policed investigation.

Eyebrow-Raising Discovery

Brampton councilors and residents are asking the police to immediately investigate a secretive program that were authorized by senior staffers. The fraudulent program has been paying non-union employees without the council’s knowledge since 2009. The total amount paid has reached $1.25M.

Regional Councillor John Sprovieri was quoted saying that this issue has turned the whole administration in Brampton into a joke. The report shared that the fraudulent payments were made to 167 non-union city employees as discretionary salary increases that included bonuses made for simply favouring a certain employee. The payments were made between the first of January 2009 to the fourteenth of May 2014.

In an interview given by Sprovieri a few weeks ago, he said that these payments were not authorized by the council and that they were given without proper approvals. He added that the practice is no better than taking money from the cash register when no one is looking.

Brampton Sounds the Alarm

The news made headlines in Brampton the week it was released. Taxpayers took to social media and flooding the Brampton Guardian with calls demanding that the police launch a probe to find answers.

Councillor Sprovieri joined the cry and said that whoever was responsible should be brought to justice. He also said that he would be seeking the council’s help to get assistance from a police force outside Peel to ensure that there would be no conflict of interest in the investigation.

Clear Mismanagement?

The information regarding the fraud was relayed to councillors in June via an audit report. The report shared that payments were made to individual staff ranging from $123 to more than $95,000. 8 employees received a total of $316,000.

Brampton’s auditors made the report stating that the bonuses were not authorized under relevant rules at the time they were handed out. They also added that on later instances, the bonuses and payments were given without due reason given. They said that this is an indication that the OPR practice was being mismanaged. The report also noted that one of the top 10 reasons given to allow the reported payments and bonuses was favouritism, a fact that wasn’t shared with the council or the public.

Mayor Linda Jeffrey made a move to have non-city auditors look into the city’s finances after the report was released. She also suggested that Brampton should have a permanent auditor general that works independent of the city’s officials. She called the incidence as either a case of negligence or a case of corruption and added that the city should get answers. Taxpayers agree.

Worried that an overpayment fraud or a case of funds mismanagement is also happening in your business? Contact us so we can take a look. Invest in professional private investigation to combat fraud today!

Brampton Man Charged with Million-Dollar Investment Fraud

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Brampton Man Edmund Teelucksingh has been charged with more accusations this year after already being involved in a mortgage case last year where he allegedly bilked real estate investors in the tune of thousands of dollars.

Teelucksingh, 50, now living in Brampton, was originally charged in January 2016 by Nottawasaga OPP with fraud in relation to a real estate investment in 2010 in which a victim claim he sunk $50,000. At that time, Teelucksingh was living in Mississauga. It has now been found out by the police that as many as 20 New Tecumseth residents lost a total of about $1 million in that scheme.

The charges were brought against Teelucksingh following a 30-month investigation of his involvement in investment fraud by Nottawasaga OPP. The said investigation was launched in May 2013 after a Nottawasaga resident complained that he’s been a victim of a $50,000 fraud after investing in what he thought was a legitimate real estate investment in 2010.

More Charges

Earlier this month, OPP announced that 3 other men have been charged together with Teelucksingh regarding running a large-scale “pyramid-type scheme”, as shared by the police.

To date, a total of 68 charges were brought against the 4 perpetrators. The charges include a fraud case with a value of over $5,000, and charges of conspiracy to commit money laundering and fraud. 29 of the charges were laid against Brampton resident Teelucksingh.

19 charges were filed against 57-year old Marcel Jones of Highgate, 15 charges filed against 39-year old Shawn Jones of Whitby, and 5 charges were brought against 68-year old Badar Siddiqui of Ajax.

The 4 accused men were scheduled to appear in the Ontario Court of Justice in Bradford a few days ago. No statements from fellow Brampton residents are available at this time.

Brampton Residents Take Note

Do you recall that you may have heard of a similar scheme in Brampton or Mississauga in the past few years? Be sure to let the local authorities know. You may be able to bring fraudsters like this Brampton man to justice.

For possible fraud concerns that you want to get to the bottom of, our private investigator’s services might come in handy. We serve the area in and around the city of Toronto including Mississauga and Brampton. Contact us at Haywood Hunt today for your obligation-free initial private investigation consultation!

Millionaire Found Beaten and Ditched in Brampton Charged with Fraud

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When you think of fraud, the farthest thing that would come to your mind is for someone to get himself kidnapped, beaten up, and thrown in a ditch. That would be beyond strange, indeed!

The situation above seems to be what happened to self-described millionaire Reza Mokhtarian. Mokhtarian claimed that he was kidnapped by 10 men, was beaten to a pulp, and then was dumped in a ditch in Brampton earlier this year.

In a sudden twist of events, Mokhtarian is currently facing fraud charges against the public in the tune of $5,000.

The Strange Brampton Kidnapping Case

CBC News recently confirmed that business coach and self-described millionaire Reza Mokhtarian has now been charged with fraud. This is the same man that was found half-naked in a Brampton ditch and got a few people arrested over his case.

In a statement released by the Ontario Securities Commission earlier this month, Mokhtarian has been charged with one criminal count of fraud against the people of Ontario over the amount of $5,000 between the 1st of July 2013 and 31st of December 2015. His Toronto court hearing is scheduled on October 26.

Further details about the fraud were not provided by the OSC, as the case is already deemed a matter for the courts.

What we know are the publicly available details of Mokhtarian’s case. He claimed that he was apparently kidnapped and held hostage by rivals on February 25. The strange thing is that he says he was dragged into a van after playing soccer with friends. After that, 4 very large men held him captive in his home for about 15 hours, with another 3 guarding the exit points of his home. He also shared that his details were murky because he had a concussion as he was witnessing all of these unfold.

Mokhtarian’s grey 2010 Bentley was later found by the police and two individuals, a man and a woman were arrested for kidnapping forcibly confining him. These two individuals will also appear in court come October 7th.

The Fraud Case

Peel Regional Police have not shared if the fraud charge is linked to the kidnapping and beating.

Mokhtarian is also involved in an alleged scam. Lawyer David Marcovitch, representing 1 of Mokhtarian’s 5 former clients shared that according to his client, Mokhtarian presented himself as foreign exchange trader. His client says that all of his investments are now lost.

When Mokhtarian was interviewed for the alleged assault he suffered at the hands of his captors, he said that he believes the perpetrators are his competitors. He denied any connection with his alleged kidnapping and a previously failed business venture.

In a statement, Mokhtarian said that the people accusing him of scamming them are simply glory seekers who are using the media. He also said that no money was lost because his former clients traded on their own free will. As for the fraud charge, Mokhtarian declined to leave a comment.

Isn’t all these strange? A case like this certainly calls for private investigation services! Find out what else we can help you with by clicking the contact us button. Your call is obligation-free!