Police arrested two Calgarian men after several people paid them for RV camping lots and dock spaces at a southeastern British Columbia resort. The victims thought they were purchasing spaces at a development on the shores of Lake Koocanusa in B.C.
The scam netted more than $2 million from multiple victims between 2014 and 2017. The scam was titled Sweetwater Resort, Sweetwater RV Park or Sweetwater at Lake Koocanusa.
Customers reported they had become worried about the legitimacy of the transactions after communication between them and the project’s owner became infrequent.
Investigators discovered that the transactions were not valid and the RV park was ordered to close by the Regional District of East Kootenay.
Project owner Craig Douglas McMorran, 61, of Calgary, was arrested and charged with two counts of fraud over $5,000, one count of money laundering and one count of theft over $5,000.
McMorran sold docking spaces for boats in the marina, but because the slips were on Crown Land and could not be sold legally. In B.C., marina spaces can only be leased or rented, not sold.
McMorran’s sales manager, Gus Kalabalikis, 53, of Calgary, was also arrested this week. He was charged with one count of theft over $5,000 and three counts of fraud over $5,000.
“Before buying any land or lot packages, it is always recommended to research the company beforehand and to have a lawyer overlook contracts and company information to ensure the transaction and business are legitimate,” said Staff Sgt. Geoff Gawlinski of the CPS economic crimes unit.
This article was originally sourced by CBC.