Alleged fraudsters take Calgary dealerships, identity theft victims for $800K ride
The Calgary Police Service has identified two suspects, and arrested one of them, in connection with identity theft and the defrauding of Calgary-area vehicle dealerships and financial institutions.
One of the men, Sean Airey, has been arrested. Airey was previously convicted of helping Nathan Gervais flee Canada ahead of a murder trial. A warrant has been issued for the arrest of the second suspect, Mohammed Khalid Alshanti.
According to police, the two men used stolen identities to illegally purchase multiple vehicles from dealerships in Calgary throughout 2018.
The suspects allegedly replaced the Vehicle Identification Numbers (VINs) on the vehicles before reselling them and obtaining financing loans for the vehicles they no longer possessed. The identity theft victims were left responsible for vehicle loans that had been fraudulently secured using their names.
An investigation by the Calgary Police Service auto theft team resulted in a search of a residence in the 200 block of 13th Avenue Southeast that resulted in the seizure of documents and electronic devices.
CPS officials have identified a total of 10 identity fraud victims in Canada and overseas in connection with the investigation and have recovered five vehicles from Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver and the United States. The total value of the five vehicles exceeds $410,000 and the combined amount of the fraudulent loans and financial transactions exceeds $800,000.
The fraudulently purchased or financed vehicles include:
- Two Porsche Cayennes
- Two Range Rovers
- A Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG
- A Dodge Ram
- A Jeep Grand Cherokee
- An Audi A5
In connection with the investigation, Sean Alexander Airey, 27, of Calgary has been arrested and charged with fraud over $5,000.
An arrest warrant has been issued for 37-year-old Mohammed Khalid Alshanti in Calgary on charges of fraud over $5,000 and possession of a controlled substance.
Alshanti is described as:
- Approximately 178 cm (5'10") tall
- Weighing 91 kg (200 lbs)
- Having brown eyes and brown hair
- Having facial hair
- Having a heavy accent
Anyone with information regarding Alshanti's whereabouts is asked to contact the Calgary Police Service at 403-266-1234 or anonymous tips may be submitted to Crime Stoppers.