Charges laid in driveway paving scam

A 36-year-old man is charged in connection to a driveway paving scam.

A 36-year-old man is charged in connection to a driveway paving scam.

The man, who police say has no fixed address, is charged with two counts of fraud and one count of obstruction in connection to an incident in the Rural Municipality of Rockwood on Oct. 5.

The man is in custody at the Winnipeg Remand Center.

The RCMP are also investigating whether he is part of a group travelling throughout Canada attempting to defraud rural residents.

Several complaints have recently been received by RCMP  in the Rockwood area, about 16 kilometres north of Winnipeg.

Fraudsters deported

The scam, which offers people a cheap, quick fix for driveways, also hit the Winnipeg and Regina areas last year. Seven people were arrested in Regina and deported two days later by the Canada Border Services Agency.

Typically, the person conducting the scam approaches a homeowner, saying their crew just finished repaving someone else's driveway and they have leftover asphalt.

They then offer to fix up the homeowner's driveway at a cut-rate with the excess material.

The Better Business Bureau issued a warning about the scam last year, saying some of the individuals are unlicensed contractors and others aren't even authorized to work in Canada.

Anyone who may have been approached by suspicious individuals offering to pave driveways is advised to contact police as well as the Manitoba Consumer's Bureau at 1-800-782-0067.