Arrests made in GTA taxi fraud investigation

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Net Patrol International Inc.  Data Investigation and Forensic Services
Bankruptcy and Insolvency Trustees

March 22, 2021 – Investigators from the Peel Regional Police Fraud Bureau, in co-operation with Toronto Police Service, Halton Regional Police Service, Hamilton Police Service and York Regional Police, have charged three individuals and have issued a warrant for the arrest of a fourth man in relation to an alleged fraud investigation involving a replica taxi operating throughout the Greater Toronto Area that caused the victims a loss in excess of $37,000.

Officers have investigated in excess of 35 cases of debit card theft and frauds targeting well-intended citizens. The suspects would pose as the driver of a taxi and a rear seat passenger, and approach the victims at which point the passenger would offer cash in exchange for the victim using their debit card to pay the fare, as the taxi driver would not accept cash due to Covid-19 contact limitations. The victims would insert their debit card into a point of sale terminal that was modified to capture the victims personal identification number (PIN) number, which was then followed by the taxi driver secretly swapping the victims card with a previously exploited debit card. The suspects would then use the stolen card and PIN to make large cash withdrawals and purchases.

The motor vehicle involved in these incidents was a decommissioned taxi cab and was not actively owned or operated by any GTA taxi companies.

“This has been a difficult year for many who are suffering through personal and financial pressures created by the pandemic. Despite these challenges, people from our community agreed to help someone else and were victimized for their kindness” said Nick Milinovich, Deputy Chief of Investigative and Emergency Services. “It is satisfying to see this end, and our police service will continue to work diligently to hold offenders accountable for their actions and protect those that live, work or visit Peel Region.”