In January of 2022 8 District – Grimsby officers responded to a residence in Lincoln for a fraud complaint.
The initial investigation by officers determined that in November of 2021 the homeowner had been approached by a man and woman (married) claiming to be interested in purchasing their home and property. The residence is in rural Lincoln near Fly Road and Campden Road. Over the following weeks a purchase contract totaling $5.6 million was agreed on through real estate agents and legal counsel. The seller vacated the property in anticipation of the deal closing. After repeated delays and a further review of the paperwork to support the sale supplied by the man and woman, fraudulent documents were found.
The deal was canceled. The victim had spent approximately $35,000 in moving, and legal fees.
The investigation was assigned to detectives from the Niagara Regional Police Service Central Fraud Unit. As a result of the detective’s investigation the suspect man and woman were identified. Further investigation led to man being identified in relation to similar fraud complaints.
The man was a suspect in an attempted fraudulent Grimsby condominium purchase in May 2021 and a St. Catharines storage unit scam in February 2021.
As a result of the investigation detectives formed grounds that criminal offences occurred.
On April 19, 2022, Maria Pierce (55 years) of Niagara Falls was arrested and charged with the criminal offences of:
Fraud over $5000 False Pretence
Maria Pierce was subsequently released on a Form 10 Undertaking with a future court date.
On May 6, 2022, Anthony Derek Douglas Pierce (55 years) of Niagara Falls was arrested and charged with the criminal offences of:
Fraud over $5000 (5 Counts) False Pretence (3 Counts)
Anthony Pierce was held for a video bail hearing on May 6, 2022. He was held in custody with a next court date of May 12, 2022.
Anyone with information about this investigation are asked to contact detectives by calling 905-688-4111, extension 1009245.
Members of the public who wish to provide information anonymously can contact Crime Stoppers of Niagara online or by calling 1-800-222-8477. Crime Stoppers offers cash rewards to persons who contact the program with information which leads to an arrest.
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