A group of Canadian immigration consultants and lawyers are raising the alarm over the persistent and growing wide range of misinformation and scams intending migrants are exposed to. The lawyers and consultants emphasized how easy it is for people both in and outside Canada to pose as immigration agents or expert thereby taking advantage of people who are desperately looking to migrate to Canada.
An Iranian-Canadian and a regulated Canadian immigration consultant, Laleh Sahba, cited the example of when she was approached by the so-called immigration agents who took her for another desperate immigrant. They promised to help her get a Canadian passport by first obtaining a Canadian visitor visa or student visa for at least $25,000.
Speaking at her Vancouver office, Sahba said the act of misleading and selling migrants wrong information has become a huge business. She expressed her concern and displeasure at the way people’s lives are being put at risk just because of money.
40-year-old Sahba who has been in Canada for two decades has been an immigration consultant for 15 years. She explained that many intending migrants come to her already screwed. More often than not, there is nothing we can do to help them as they have simply fallen victims of swindlers.
The immigration-advice industry is a fast growing one all over the world. In Canada, the industry includes 1,000 immigration lawyers and 5,400 regulated immigration consultants. Unfortunately, there are so many unlicensed agents in the system.
Sahba is, therefore, calling for more effort towards cleaning up the industry.
An immigration lawyer, Marina Sedai, whose office is also in Vancouver shares Sahba’s view concerning the rampant immigration fraud cases. She said she has also received from many clients that have faced nasty things from self-professed agents.
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