South Asian businesspersons charged in alleged immigration fraud investigation

B.C. businessmen Randhir (Randy) Toor, Surinder Paul Singla, Ved Kaler and Gurtaj Grewal are facing charges under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act in connection with an alleged immigration fraud network, CBC reports.

The charges are related to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) investigation into Can-Asia Immigration Consultants’ Rupinder (Ron) Batth and his wife Navdeep Batth.

None of the allegations have been tested in court.

The CBSA raid in Surrey was first reported by The VOICE on October 10, 2017. This newspaper reported:

“The office of Can-Asia Immigration Consultants Canada at 128th Street and 80th Avenue in Surrey was searched by the Canada Border Services Agency last week on October 5.

“A passer-by who shot some video of the raid from outside sent it to The VOICE.

“When The VOICE contacted the CBSA …, they sent the following email: “We can tell you that the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) executed a search warrant on a property in Surrey, BC on October 5, 2017. As the matter is still under investigation by the CBSA, no additional information will be provided at this time.”

(https://voiceonline.com/canasian-immigration-services/)

The Batths also face charges.

According to CBC, the charges include 18 counts of counselling or attempting to counsel misrepresentation or helping people misrepresent facts related to their immigration, 50 counts of knowingly misrepresenting or withholding facts that can induce error in administration, and one count of communicating false information with regard to someone’s immigration.

The Batths’ first court appearance is October 13 at Surrey Provincial Court.

CBC reported that Toor, Singla, Kaler and Grewal “each face multiple counts of counselling or attempting to counsel misrepresentation or helping people misrepresent facts related to their immigration.” They along with the Batths were charged in early September.

CBC also reported that court documents filed in 2017 to obtain a search warrant by the CBSA named the companies run by the four businessmen. Twenty-five other companies are listed in the document, along with 144 foreign nationals.

According to CBC: “The court document, filed by CBSA investigator Gary Sidhu, describes an investigation into two types of immigration fraud — schemes to help foreign nationals obtain temporary work permits and permanent residency using fraudulent work experience and credentials, as well as getting employers to “pad” applications to hire temporary foreign workers.”

The “padding” of labour market impact assessments (LMIA) creates non-existent jobs that foreign nationals pay for, but when they arrive in Canada, they find there is no job.

Toor is president and one of the owners of Oliver-based Desert Hills Estate Winery. But his business is not listed in the court document, although there is a “Toor Vineyards” which doesn’t exist, CBC reported. Toor faces 18 charges under the IRPA. He also faces 10 charges of possessing a firearm without a licence or registration and one other weapons charge. His first court appearance is October 21 in Penticton.

Singla, who is president and founder of Penticton-based Singla Brothers Holding Ltd., faces 10 charges. His first court appearance is October 21 in Penticton.

Kaler, who is President of VK Delivery and Moving, faces six charges. His first appearance in court is October 19 in New Westminster.

Grewal, President and CEO of Agiforce Security in Surrey, faces 10 counts under the IRPA. His first court appearance is October 15 in Surrey.

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