Suspended mortgage broker Dennis Khanna charged with fraud, released on bail

Khanna faces 19 fraud-related charges. Hamilton Police have been probing Khanna's business dealings for months, and his broker's licence was revoked in December.

Local police partnered with other services and provincial agencies in its probe

A Hamilton Police officer brought boxes to the office of suspended mortgage broker Dennis Khanna on King Street West in March during a search. Khanna was arrested on 19 fraud-related charges on Wednesday. (Kelly Bennett/CBC)

Hamilton police have laid 19 criminal fraud-related charges against suspended mortgage broker Dinesh (Dennis) Khanna, in connection with cases where complainants say he bilked clients out of their money and homes.

Khanna, 61, of Oakville is charged with 11 counts of fraud over $5,000, three counts of giving a false statement, two counts of false documents and three counts of forging documents. 

Those are added to existing charges of sexual assault involving several complainants, for which Khanna was arrested and released on bail earlier this year. 

Hamilton police have been probing Khanna's business dealings for at least 10 months. In March, they executed search warrants on his King Street West office and Oakville home, bringing piles of boxes to gather paperwork and records. 

Provincial regulators suspended Khanna's licence in December, alleging that he carried out a "pattern of manipulation and exploitation" of his clients through his Metro Financial Planning Limited business on King Street West.

Police searched the King St. W. office of Dennis Khanna's mortgage brokerage in March. (Kelly Bennett/CBC)

The regulator, FSCO, is pushing for the licences to be completely revoked. That's the subject of Financial Services Tribunal hearings that are scheduled for next month.

FSCO alleged that Khanna took out mortgages in already financially distressed clients' names without their knowledge, charged significant fees and, when some borrowers couldn't make their payments, transferred the homes or titles into the names of his family members.

Civil lawsuits worth millions

Some of his former clients have also launched civil suits worth millions. 

In one case, it is alleged he rented out the home after taking possession from the owner. Cumulatively, the plaintiffs in three lawsuits reviewed by CBC are suing for over $2 million in damages.

Police have charged Dinesh (Dennis) Khanna with fraud. Investigators have been probing the business dealings of the suspended Hamilton mortgage broker. Some of his former clients are now suing him for millions. (Hamilton Police Service)

In one statement of claim, a former client alleges that her dealings with Khanna ripped apart her life, and she has "never recovered." 

Police partnered with several other agencies and provincial bodies to investigate the case, Hamilton Police Service says.

Released on bail Wednesday

Arrested Wednesday morning, Khanna appeared in court Wednesday afternoon wearing a red jacket, a light-coloured collared shirt and khaki pants. 

Several members of Khanna's family and friends were at the courthouse Wednesday for his bail hearing. They said they didn't want to speak to media.

Khanna is being represented by defence attorneys John Rosen and John Abrams. They declined to comment Wednesday.

Khanna was released on bail and is scheduled to appear next in court on Oct. 25.

Police say their investigation is continuing and ask anyone with more information to call Det. Kevin Dhinsa at 905-546-8930 or Crime Stoppers.

kelly.bennett@cbc.ca | @kellyrbennett

With files from Adam Carter