B.C. fraud ring busted, multiple charges laid

Four men have been charged in connection with an alleged fraud ring perpetrated across B.C.

Richmond RCMP’s economic crimes unit (ECU) carried out an investigation over the last 18 months or so in multiple cities, including Richmond, Vancouver, Surrey, Langley, Cranbrook, Kamloops, Kelowna and Regina.

Their probe resulted in multiple search warrants being executed at locations allegedly connected to the fraud ring in Richmond and Vancouver.

The BC Prosecution Service has approved a total of 24 charges, including fraud, forgery, possession of property obtained by crime and unauthorized possession of a firearm against one of the accused.

Four men charged

Those charged are:

Christopher Birkbeck, of Surrey;

Michael Ridley, of Ontario;

Richard Yeltatzie, of Richmond;

Ayron Borovic, of Vancouver.

Yeltatzie has also been charged with eight crimes, including fraud, on another Richmond file.

That file relates to February 2020, when Richmond’s ECU team conducted an investigation where a residence was allegedly sold by fraudulent means, unbeknownst to the homeowner.

In this case, the BC Prosecution Service has approved eight charges against Yeltatzie and three against a Kieran Yeltatzie.

“I am extremely proud of the hard work and dedication the investigators from our Economic Crime Unit have demonstrated throughout the course of this investigation,” said Richmond RCMP’s Insp. Michael Cohee.

“I also want to thank all of the units from within Richmond Detachment as well as the Lower Mainland Emergency Response Team who assisted our Economic Crime Unit at various times throughout the investigation.

“The identification and subsequent charges against this group has resulted in a significant disruption of a prolific fraud, identity theft and property crime network operating in BC.”

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