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Reviews after ;charges dropped against fraudster

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Lawyer Norman Groot can't believe the Crown's decision to drop fraud charges against a Torontonian who defrauded a company he represents.


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The Crown has quashed criminal charges against a Toronto man who was civilly convicted of a nearly $640,000 phishing fraud, saying there wasn't enough 'enough' ;public interest” to justify a criminal trial.

That's what the Toronto police officer handling the case told lawyer Norman Groot, who represents the Hong Kong company Sunshine Aquatic Products that was defrauded in 2021.

< p class="StyledBodyHtmlParagraph-sc-48221190-4 hnvfyV">Toronto resident Andre Dixon was found guilty of civil fraud.

However, more Two years after the Ontario Superior Court ruling, Sunshine Aquatic only managed to recover $124,700, after obtaining an injunction to freeze what remained in the fraudster's account.

Mr. Groot does not understand why the Crown believes that it is not in the public interest to have a criminal trial against Andre Dixon.

Does crime pay?

A quote from Norman Groot, lawyer representing the company Sunshine Aquatic Products

When criminals know that there is no public interest […], there is no deterrent effect, adds Me Groot.

Andre Dixon did not respond to CBC's requests for comment.

The case involves phishing fraud. According to the civil judgment against him, Andre Dixon hacked the email account of an employee of a supplier of baby eels to Sunshine Aquatic and then convinced the company to pay nearly $640,000 into an account that x27;he was in control.

A spokesperson for the Ministry of the Attorney General explains by email that each case is evaluated to determine if there is a reasonable prospect of conviction and whether it is in the public interest to move forward.

For her part, fraud consultant Vanessa Iafolla calls the dropping of criminal charges absurd.

I don't understand why it is not in the public interest to move forward [on criminal matters], when fraud is the most prevalent type of crime in Canada, according to Statistics Canada , she says.

Based on information provided by Nicole Brockbank of CBC News

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