Charges laid in fraudulent home-security business scam
We’ve charged two men in relation to fraudulently selling and authorizing customer contracts for the installation of home-alarm systems.
During a four-month-long investigation that began in November 2021, investigators learned that two men, who were company directors of a Calgary-based home-alarm business, had created 80 fraudulent accounts and contracts for home-security systems. Between July and October 2021, the two men billed the phony contracts to a parent company located in Saskatchewan, resulting in $132,800 of fraudulent payouts pocketed by the two men.
The parent company had previously arranged for the Calgary business to develop customer contracts by selling, installing and servicing security systems for residential and commercial customers. As the Calgary business is a legitimate authorized dealer for the parent company, the suspects were paid for their work by the parent company each time they signed up a new client.
In August 2021, the parent company started receiving complaints from customers who claimed they were being billed for services they hadn’t signed up for. By October, they began receiving payment rejections for customer contracts created by the Calgary business. Concerned about the legitimacy of the contracts, the parent company conducted an audit of properties that the Calgary business claimed to have contracts for, and it was ultimately found that none of the contracts were valid. Company executives then notified the Calgary Police Service.
Investigators discovered that the two men used the identities of several existing customers to create fraudulent contracts while also creating two false front companies to authorize the phony contracts.
On Thursday, March 17, 2022, three search warrants were executed and both men were arrested in Calgary.
As a result, Christopher Luke JELLOW, 29, has been charged with one count each of fraud over $5,000, uttering forged documents, driving with a suspended licence, operating an uninsured motor vehicle and operating an unregistered motor vehicle. He is also known to have used the alias of Luke MATHESON.
He is scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday, May 18, 2022.
Navin MAGHERA, 46, has been charged with one count of fraud over $5,000 and one count of uttering forged documents. He is also known to have used the alias of Nav SHIPRA.
He will next appear in court on Thursday, April 21, 2022.
“Fraud investigations often take several months to complete, due to their complexity,” says Staff Sergeant Geoff Gawlinski of the Calgary Police Service Economic Crimes Unit. “Throughout the course of the investigation, several areas of the Service assisted in bringing this case to a successful conclusion, including the Fraud Team, Police Online Investigations Team, Money Laundering and Asset Forfeiture Team, Anti- Corruption Team and our frontline members. We are proud that through collaborative efforts, we were able to lay charges against the individuals responsible for defrauding multiple people and a legitimate business out of thousands of dollars.”
The Calgary Police Service reminds citizens to report fraudulent activity to the police by calling the non-emergency number at 403-266-1234 or by calling 911 for a crime in progress. Tips can also be left anonymously by contacting Crime Stoppers using any of the following methods:
APP: "P3 Tips"