CONSERVATIVES said on Friday that they are increasingly hearing alarming news reports of international students, mainly from South Asia, being issued fraudulent college acceptance letters by dishonest consultants to study in Canada.
Hundreds of students are now being threatened with deportation by Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) after submitting applications for permanent residency and the Conservatives say that these vulnerable students have been failed by an incompetent Liberal government that should have detected the fraudulent letters during the study visa application process.
They say that their leader Pierre Poilievre and his team will not stand for these injustices caused by the continued failings of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his Liberal government. The Conservatives are calling for the Liberal government to take this issue seriously, and for the Minister of Immigration to do his job and protect international students.
MP Tom Kmiec, Conservative Critic for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, and MP Brad Redekopp, Vice-Chair of the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration, in a letter to Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, on Friday said: “We are writing to share our deep concerns about reports that international students who studied in Canada were issued fraudulent college acceptance letters by dishonest consultants. IRCC [Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada] failed to identify these fake letters and issued valid Canadian study visas based on fraudulent college acceptance letters. Students came to Canada on these study visas and were frankly scammed by these dishonest agents who told them their colleges of choice were full and directed them to smaller college alternatives. It is estimated that hundreds of students are now being threatened with deportation by CBSA after the students submitted applications for permanent residency. Only then were proper verifications conducted by government officials.”
They added: “These students and their families sacrificed their life savings to seek education and a better life in Canada. Many of these students work, study, and live in Canada. These students were exploited by malicious consultants and failed by the government that should have detected the fraudulent letters during the study visa application process. Canadians and parliamentarians alike should be deeply concerned about the integrity of our immigration system.”
The MPs noted: “On May 25, 2023, we wrote to the Chair of the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration requesting an emergency meeting pursuant to Standing Order 106(4). We believe it is incumbent on the Committee to investigate this matter and discover how these fraudulent admissions letters were approved by IRCC during the study visa application process and why there were no proper safeguards in place to protect these prospective students. IRCC must explain why it took years to discover these college admissions letters were fraudulent and why an inspection was not conducted during the application process and what measures need to be implemented to bring an end to this practice.”
They added: “We have noted your tweet on the matter this morning, stating that IRCC is investigating the matter of fraudulent acceptance letters. A last minute, lacklustre social media post is not enough. The integrity of our immigration system is at stake. Swift action must be taken to ensure that such a situation does not occur again.”