“Today’s announcement is the end-result of the hard work done by the RCMP and CBSA, and they should be congratulated for their dedicated effort in bringing these charges forward. These efforts reinforce our government’s commitment to protecting the integrity of our immigration system,” commented Public Safety Minister Vic Toews.
The citizenship and permanent residence fraud constituted a permanent resident paying crooked consultants up to $25,000 for a family of five over four or more years to fabricate falsified proof of Canadian residence, in order to qualify for Canadian citizenship or maintain their permanent resident status.
Individuals falsify proof of residence to meet the requirement under Canadian law for permanent residents to live in Canada for three years out of the preceding four years to be granted Canadian citizenship, and also to meet the requirement to reside in Canada for two out of five years to retain their status as permanent residents.
Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) said that it is currently investigating 5,000 cases of permanent residents who are believed to be engaged in residence fraud. CIC believes most of these individuals are currently outside the country.
According to CIC, almost 1,800 applicants under investigation have abandoned their citizenship applications as information about the investigation has been publicized.