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Progress on fraud scheme targeting City

For immediate release: August 19, 2019 - 11:02am
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The City of Saskatoon continues to make progress on recovering $1.04 million in funds that earlier this month were directed to a fraudster’s bank account through a fraud scheme.

“While it is early in the investigation, we’re pleased to say most of the funds have been identified or traced and have been locked-down by Court order,” says City Manager Jeff Jorgenson.

Jorgenson says the City is chasing down every lead and working with banking institutions and the Saskatoon Police Service.

“Recovery of the remaining funds, further fortifying our controls, and gathering all of the facts continues to be the City’s number-one priority,” he says. “This is a very good start and we are cautiously optimistic about recovering more funds.”

A fraudster electronically impersonated the Chief Financial Officer of Allan Construction, asking for a change of banking information. The City complied, and as a result, the next contract payment intended to go to that company, was directed to the fraudster’s bank account. The fraud was identified on August 12, 2019.

“It’s very disconcerting that the perpetrator used my name and our company name to commit this crime,” says Allan Construction’s CFO Blaine Dubreuil. “We have done a security assessment and are confident that our systems were not hacked or compromised. We’ll be working closely with the City of Saskatoon and the Saskatoon Police Service as the investigation continues.”

The City has issued a claim with its insurer. To protect the integrity of the police investigation the City and Allan Construction are not at liberty to disclose further details.