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Charges Laid in Scam Targeting Immigrants

Charges Laid in Scam Targeting ImmigrantsPeel police have announced that Mississauga resident Sakia Mojadiddi has been charged with fraud following an investigation. Authorities report that Mojadiddi is accused of defrauding Canadian arrivals from the Middle East who were looking to bring their family to Canada. The targets were largely from Afghanistan.

The investigation stems from a complaint brought to police in 2017. A complainant told police they had paid thousands of dollars to a group called Afghan Refugee Relief (ARR), which offered help for immigrants looking to sponsor family to come to Canada. The complainant alleged they contacted Mojadiddi but Mojadiddi failed to file the paperwork in the case with Citizenship and Immigration Canada or Canada Border Services Agency. After a long delay, ARR allegedly also refused to refund the money, even though the application was never processed.

During the investigation, police reached out to the community and 38 additional people stepped forward with details. Police have uncovered victims allegedly defrauded of $780,000 so far in the investigation. In addition to Mojadiddi, three other women have been charged with fraud-related offenses. Morassa Rizvi, Dunya Mojadiddi, and Mariam Qureshi have all been charged with, variously, fraud, conspiracy to commit fraud, and possession of proceeds of crime. They are scheduled to appear in court in March. Police are asking anyone with further information to contact the Peel Fraud Bureau or Peel Crime Stoppers.

Preventing Fraud

Immigration fraud can include many types of crimes:

  • Someone posing as an authority or government official calls and tells you that you owe money or are in legal trouble. This person may ask for money or personal information.
  • Consultants or private companies promise a specific outcome and charge a lot of money while promising you your applications will be accepted
  • You get an email which seems to be related to an immigration matter, asking you to click a link.

Keep an eye out for these scams. If someone contacts you in this manner, hang up. Do not reply to a suspicious mail. Instead, look up the contact information for the agency they claim to be from yourself and contact the agency to find out whether there is indeed a problem. Report any suspicious phone calls or emails you get.

A good way to stay aware of immigration scams and fraud is to inform yourself about immigration processes. Immigration Direct has free resources, such as a Knowledge Base and a blog so you can get the facts. Check out our site for facts and reliable information.

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