I don’t feel bad and I won’t be caught, says CRA scammer
A con artist reached by Starmetro reasons Canada is a ‘ better country’ than India MOREAT
The job is like being an executioner, says the voice on the other end of the phone. It’s just what he’s paid to do.
The man with a light English accent says he’s speaking from an India-based call centre where he and other scam artists work through the night, phoning Canadians and claiming to work for the Canada Revenue Agency. They tell people they owe tax money and will be arrested if they don’t pay. Some panicked victims send thousands of dollars.
“It’s like somebody in Texas. He’s an executioner; he has to execute people, he has to kill people. It’s his job. That’s what he’s doing, isn’t it?” he said. “It’s like that. I’m just doing a job right now.”
On Oct. 29, following news of raids against call centres in India, Starmetro received a call to a newsroom phone from someone claiming to be from the CRA. They said we had to contact them immediately to remedy a tax issue.
We called back to see if anyone would share their story. They did. The resulting conversation with a man claiming to be a CRA scammer provides some insight into why they continue to target Cana- The number of hate crimes reported to Canadian police jumped sharply last year after years of small increases, with new statistics showing incidents targeting Black people, Jews and Muslims accounting for most of the upturn.
Hate crimes targeting Black people accounted for 16 per cent of all hate crimes in Canada in 2017, Statistics Canada reported Thursday.
They stayed the most com- dians and why the recent busts will not deter them.
The Canadian Anti-fraud Centre (CAFC) reports that it has received about 74,000 complaints about the calls since 2014, with 4,000 victims reporting more than $15.2 million in losses to the scammers.
In late October, Canadian mon type of race- or ethnicityrelated hate crime.
Incidents involving Muslims more than doubled between 2016 and 2017, from 139 incidents to 349, one year after police reported a decrease in hate crimes targeting that population. police announced that a joint effort with American and Indian police agencies had shut down three such call centres. Officers arrested several people and seized information related to about 600 Canadians who had fallen for the scam.
In the week following similar arrests in 2016, complaints to the CAFC about the scam
Overall, hate crimes targeting Muslims accounted for 17 per cent of all incidents.
And hate crimes targeting Jews increased for the second consecutive year and accounted for 18 per cent of all hate crimes nationally.
The figures prompted Jewish groups to call on the Liberals to do more to help police fight hate crime, and follow through on a pledge by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to expand a program aimed at helping religious groups pay for security at their facilities.
Hate crimes based on sexual orientation accounted for about one in 10 of all such incidents last year. dropped by 93 per cent — but they picked up again in the following months.
On Nov. 6, police told the Parliament Hill press gallery they will continue working to root out and shut down the call centres in India.
The man we spoke to gave a name and later provided a photo of an Indian ID, but Starmetro has chosen not to publish the name because of remaining concerns about its veracity. The man would not prove the ID was in his possession.
A Linkedin page says a man with that name is employed by a company called Sonark Outsourcing Solutions. The company’s Facebook page says it is located in Phoenix, Ariz., but the page is full of photos labelled as being taken in Ludhiana, Punjab, India. The city is in the country’s north, near its border with Pakistan.
Starmetro could not find a phone number for Sonark Outsourcing Solutions. An email address for Sonark found on an Indian company listing site also appears online as the email for a number of different companies. StarMetro sent a message to the email address but did not receive a response.
In the Facebook photos, employees are seen eating cake, living it up celebrating birthdays and holidays. Videos promote parties being thrown by the company. However, our caller said he works until 4 a.m., 21 days per month, at a “s--hole of a job.”
He insists there’s no other option for him. The scam earns him $400 a month — $300 more than he’d make at a legitimate call centre, he said.
There’s inadequate medical coverage in India and life costs money, he said, arguing he must provide for his family. Those who fall for the scam and lose their savings are of no concern to him.
“Right now, they’re in a better situation than I am. They’re in a better country than I am,” he said. “Their government is not going to see them in the street, but my government will see me in the street.”
Hate crimes targeting Blacks, Jews, Muslims on rise, Statcan says
“RIGHT NOW, THEY’RE IN A BETTER SITUATION THAN I AM. THEY’RE IN A BETTER COUNTRY THAN I AM.”
CRA scam caller
the past week and a half, these memories came to mind, Huang, executive director of the Vancouver-based non-profit Hua Foundation, said. And while until recently, coverage of the event largely focused on the theatricality of the National Geographic- style struggle of mammal versus fish, Huang said the conflict holds deeper significance for many Vancouverites.
But most of all, the presence of koi in contemporary life here in Vancouver points to the ways in which the city’s history is fundamentally tied to the history of the Asian settlers who have helped define the city’s identity since its inception, he said.
One CRA scam caller reached byy Starmetro saysy despitep ppolice raids in India, he's not worried about being caught. The scam earns him $400 a month, which is $300 more than he’d make at a legitimate call centre.
In 2017, police reported 2,073 hate crimes, an increase of 664 from 2016.