Five men are facing a combined 37 charges in connection with a coloured diamond and jewelry investment fraud that resulted in seven people losing about $1.7 million, police say.
According to a news release issued by Toronto Police Service on Friday, several individuals were contacted between October 2013 and March 2018 by representatives claiming to be with a company known as Paragon International Wealth Management Inc. The victims were given false information about buyers and the value of their coloured diamonds and jewelry.
The suspects provided the victims with documents which police say were misleading and “did not accurately depict coloured diamonds and/or jewelry received by victims.”
Five Americans and two Canadians lost about $1.7 million in total.
Police say the suspects used aliases while representing this company. The names used were Michael King, John Moore, Edward Rose, John Carson and Ronald Sterling.
Officers arrested two suspects on Wednesday and three others on Thursday.
Antonio Palazzolo, 60, of Pickering, Ronald Klenbery, 72, of Toronto, Michael Shumak, 48, of Markham, James Gagliardini, 40, of Toronto, and Edward Rosenberg, 53, of Richmond Hill are facing a variety of charges for fraud over $5,000.
All five men are scheduled to appear in court on July 11.
Police are urging the public to take caution when companies contact them for the purpose of making an investment. The investigation is ongoing and police are asking anyone with information to contact 416-808-7300 or to reach out to Crime Stoppers anonymously.