The charges stem from a criminal investigation conducted by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Windsor Immigration and Passport Section. Ten victims were identified as having utilized the consultant’s services by submitting fees and other payments ranging from $2000.00 to $100,000.00.
Immigration consultants are professional persons who, for a fee, advise, consult, assist or represent persons with their application process to Citizenship and Immigration Canada. They are regulated by the Canadian Society of Immigration Consultants (CSIC) and must be members of CSIC to practice in Canada. The involved consultant’s membership to the Society was revoked on May 5th, 2006.
RCMP investigators are alleging that clients paid the firm Burgio and Associates to submit, on their behalf, applications and accompanying application fees to Citizenship and Immigration Canada in the hope of gaining status in Canada. Despite being led to believe by the consultant that applications had been submitted and were active in the immigration system, victims would discover over the course of time that no such applications were submitted on their behalf.
“At this time, we have identified eleven victims, but we believe others have utilized the consultant and had their applications and fees meet the same fate. Often, individuals who have been victimized are reluctant to come forward fearing that reporting their situation will interfere with their ability to gain legal immigration status in Canada,” stated Cpl. Rod Rudiak of the Windsor RCMP.
Charged with two counts of Fraud Over $5000.00 and nine counts of Fraud under $5000.00 is: Francesco Salvatore “Sam” Burgio, Age 45, of Amherstburg, Ontario.
Anyone who may have been victimized is asked to contact the Windsor RCMP Immigration and Passport Section at (519)948-5287.