Scam artist snows seniors

A Toronto man is facing eight charges after police caught on to a snow removal scheme targeting seniors in North York and other parts of the GTA in late January.

Police at 32 Division’s fraud office issued an alert Jan. 25, after residents in the Bathurst and Lawrence area came forth with complaints. Police say residents were approached by a man offering snow plow removal services for the remainder of winter.

Police say if a resident was interested, the man requested an advance payment, usually in cash, varying from $60 to $180. The work was never done, police allege.

Since the first police alert, about 60 new cases have been reported from areas like Mississauga, Vaughan and Richmond Hill.

The fraud office at 32 Division took on the case because the first complainants to come forth live in the division.

“We’ve had a number of other complainants come forward, and they’re spread around the city,” Detective Sergeant Jim Sproxton said in early February.

On Jan. 24, Elman Iakhiiaev, 30, was charged with eight counts of fraud under $5,000. He is scheduled to appear in court at 1000 Finch Ave. West on Feb. 14. Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 416-808-3207.