Thu. Jul 18th, 2024

CBSA Convicts Ontario Immigration Consultant of Fraud in Landmark Case

In a significant crackdown on immigration fraud, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) has successfully brought Ontario resident Maneet ‘Mani’ Malhotra to justice. Malhotra pleaded guilty to illegal immigration consulting activities and was sentenced on April 8, 2024, in an Edmonton court to an 18-month conditional sentence, including six months of house arrest. Additionally, she has been ordered to pay $148,000 in victim restitution.

The case against Malhotra, who operated NAMI Immigration Inc. in Edmonton, began in 2019 following a referral from the Government of Alberta’s Temporary Foreign Worker Advisory Office. Investigations revealed that Malhotra charged two clients significant sums—$30,000 and $45,000—to arrange employment in Alberta. However, instead of securing jobs, these clients were entangled in a deceitful scheme involving the payment for fraudulent pay stubs.

Further investigation by the CBSA unearthed more deceptive practices by Malhotra, including the provision of fake job offers and forged documents. Crucially, it was discovered that Malhotra failed to file the necessary paperwork with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and was neither a registered immigration consultant nor a practicing lawyer, violating section 91 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA).

The discovery was further substantiated when a search warrant executed on December 17, 2019, at NAMI Immigration’s offices led to the seizure of fraudulent immigration documents and additional client information. Following the findings, Malhotra was charged on April 21, 2023, and subsequently arrested at her home in Mississauga, Ontario, on May 1, 2023.

Janalee Bell-Boychuk, Regional Director General for the Prairie Region at the Canada Border Services Agency, emphasized the importance of the CBSA’s role in maintaining the integrity of Canada’s immigration system. “The Canada Border Services Agency is committed to investigating and pursuing the prosecution of individuals who abuse Canada’s immigration system. By dismantling fraudulent immigration schemes, we are protecting the integrity of Canada’s borders and safeguarding potential immigrants from exploitation,” said Bell-Boychuk.

This conviction marks a critical step in the CBSA’s ongoing efforts to combat immigration fraud and protect the rights and aspirations of immigrants seeking new opportunities in Canada.

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