Courtice (September 17, 2020) – The Durham Regional Police arrested a Courtice couple – both in their seventies – for allegedly participating in a Canada-wide lottery scam. The police identified eleven victims until now. The price scam allegedly targeted elderly Canadians. John and Pharoly Perk are facing numerous charges including fraud, forgery, and participating to a criminal organization. The police think there might be more victims.
An elderly Courtice couple is facing numerous charges for allegedly being involved in a Canada-wide lottery scam targeting seniors, according to a press release by the Durham Regional Police. Officers arrested John and Pharolyn Perk last week.
Seniors targeted in Canada-wide lottery scam
The police said the investigation began early this year. Investigators learned that victims received bogus calls claiming they had won cash and a vehicle in the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes. Police said, in the price fraud scheme, the victims were told to send money to the Courtice couple before the winnings could be released.
Last week, the police executed a search warrant at a home in Courtice. As a result, the officers determined that the two suspects have been actively participating in the scheme since early 2018. At this point, the police identified eleven victims across Canada.
Elderly couple is facing numerous fraud charges
The Durham police charged John (78) and Pharoly (75) Perk both with Conspiracy to Commit an Indictable Offense, Participation/Contributing to a Criminal Organization, two counts of Fraud Over $5,000, three counts of Fraud Under $5,000, Possession of Proceeds of Crime Over $5,000, and Possession of Proceeds of Crime Under $5,000. John Perk is additionally charged with two counts of Fraud Over $5,000 and two counts of Utter Forged Document. They were released on a promise to appear in court, police said.
‘In Canada, it is illegal for a lottery organization to charge a fee before the prize can be claimed. Lottery winnings in Canada are tax free; lottery winnings in the U.S.A. are taxed,’ explained the authorities in their press release.
‘Generally, you must be a resident of the province/state to which the lottery is registered in order to claim winnings i.e. a resident of Ontario cannot claim a lottery based in another province or U.S.A. state unless that lottery is licensed in the Province of Ontario.’
The police asked anyone with information about the Canada-wide lottery scam to contact D/Cst. Franssen of the Major Crime Fraud Unit at 1-888-579-1520 ext. 5356. Anonymous information can be sent to Durham Regional Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or online at www.durhamregionalcrimestoppers.ca. Tipsters may be eligible for a $2,000 cash reward.
Marina Burghard writes for Canadian Fraud News about fraud-related cases, whistleblower, jurisdiction, identity theft, consumer protection, etc. – essentially about scams and how to protect yourself against this kind of fraudulent criminal behavior. She holds a Master’s degree in Political Science where her interest in criminology grew. Besides fraud, Marina’s scientific interest lies in terrorism, extremism and how to deal with it as a society.