Ottawa snowplow operators face fraud charges

Snow plow
Stock image, for illustrative purposes only.

Three Ottawa snow removal companies are facing multiple charges for allegedly failing to make good on contracts after taking payments from customers.

Ottawa Police say an investigation found that Snow Vaporizers, Faul Properties and Altitude Snow Removal each performed “little to no snow removal” after getting paid from multiple residents to provide snow-clearing services last winter. 

Police say they launched the investigation after receiving complaints from the public. They say the companies operated independently and are not connected to each other.

The owner of Snow Vaporizers faces seven counts of obtaining money by false pretenses and seven counts of fraud under $5,000. His company received about $34,500, police said.

The owner of Faul Properties faces 11 counts of obtaining money by false pretenses and 11 counts of fraud under $5,000. The firm took in about $3,300, police say.

The owner of Altitude Snow Removal faces seven counts of obtaining money by false pretenses and seven counts of fraud under $5,000. Police say the company received about $7,000.

The fraud unit said there could be other victims and is urging customers who were potentially defrauded to make an online report to the Ottawa Police Service.