Niagara Falls (June 29, 2020) – The Niagara police arrested a Woodbridge man, Richard Hariraj, after executing a search warrant at a Vaughan warehouse on June 23 where they seized personal protective equipment (PPE) in connection with a fraud investigation. A local Niagara business reported a fraudulent purchase of 130,000 N95 face masks and 7,500 hand sanitizer bottles with an estimated value of $767,000 using a fraudulent bank draft.
The Niagara police seized thousands of N95 masks and bottles of hand sanitizer as a result of a fraud investigation. The investigation of the fraudulent purchase also led to the arrest of Richard Hariraj from Woodbridge, according to a police press release.
Fraudulent purchase of PPE in Niagara business
On June 19, Niagara police were called to a local business to investigate a suspected fraudulent purchase related to COVID-19, according to the authorities. The business deals with personal protective equipment (PPE).
The fraudulent purchase involved $130,000 N95 face masks and 7,500 8 oz. bottles of hand sanitizer. The combined value of the masks and the sanitizer is estimated at $767,000. The police believe that the products were paid with a bogus bank draft.
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Woodbridge man arrested in Vaughan
The Niagara police have been working jointly with York police’s Financial Crimes Unit since the investigation led to Vaughan. On June 23, the authorities executed a warrant and searched a warehouse in Vaughan, in the area of Pine Valley Drive and the 407 Highway.
The police located and seized almost all of the N95 masks and bottles of hand sanitizer, according to the press release. As a result, they arrested Hariraj and charged the 34-year-old with Possession of Property Obtained by Crime Over $5,000.
He has been released pending a future court hearing. The police said the investigation remains ongoing and asked anyone with information to contact detectives by calling 905-688-4111, extension 9076.
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