THE Peel Regional Police Fraud Bureau would like to remind residents of the region and their family members of an ongoing travel document scam. The scam involves ads for fraudulent services being placed in local Chinese newspaper advertising for visitor visas, work permits and immigration documents to foreign residents.
The victim’s contact the fraudulent companies generally through an advertisement in a local Chinese newspaper. The victim is then assured that the company will assist the victim with securing travel documents, air plane tickets and visas for family and friends living in China to travel to Canada for work.
The victim is asked to provide cash for a deposit to secure these documents and can often be instructed to provide several deposits to assist with the process. The culprits will often provide fake identification and business documents to have the victim believe in the scam. After the exchange of money the promised travel documents are not provided and this often leaves the family or friend in China waiting for a ride to the airport which never comes.
Here are some tips to prevent you from becoming a victim of the scam:
- If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is – become suspicious of it.
- The following company name ‘Gao Sheng Investment Corporation’ is a fictitious company that does not exist and has been used by culprits in the past.
- The culprit will only accept cash and will not accept cheque, or debit / credit card for payment.
- The representative will not allow the victim to meet at a business office and will ask to either meet in person at the victim’s residence or another public place such as a coffee shop or restaurant.
- The requirement of cash up front prior to any documentation or service being provided.
- Check the information that the representative has given you, such as does the business address actually exist, and does the provided phone number come back to a business and not a personal cellphone.
- Requests for money should be treated with caution and an appropriate amount of due diligence should be practiced.
- Education is the key to prevention with this type of scam. To learn more about this scam, and other scams affecting Canadians, residents are encouraged to visit www.antifraudcentre.ca
Peel Regional Police are actively investigating these incidents and ask that if anyone has any information in regards to this type of scam to contact police immediately. Contact the Fraud Bureau at (905) 453-2121, ext. 3335. Anonymous tips can also be left by calling Peel CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), or by visiting www.peelcrimestoppers.ca