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Large construction machine purchase scams

Numerous lawyers have received emails from various potential “clients” requesting representation to purchase large construction equipment (eg dredgers, cranes, drilling rigs, etc.). For example:

From: Mega Equipment Dredging Inc
Sent: Sunday, January 10, 2016 4:11 PM
Subject: Inquiry


Was wondering if your firm can undertake for my company a purchase and sales transaction? If not, a referral will be appreciated thanks.

Yours Sincerely.
Morris Riccardo
(Director of Sales)
Mega Equipment & Dredging Inc
105 North Harbour Rd W Goderich,
N7A 2W5

Emails are sometimes accompanied by bogus electronic supporting documents, such as a Guarantor form and personal IDs. These have been confirmed as scam attempts – any communication from these individuals may be simply dismissed.

Be vigilant with every request for services that you receive. Fraudulent requests for services can be made by email, paper mail and courier, as well as individuals who arrive in person to retain you and use your trust account to receive and disburse funds. Be cautious with all cheques received, especially if they exceed an agreed upon amount.

Visit our Fraud section to read more on current reported scams and how to avoid them. Remember that you must always confirm a prospective client’s identification in accordance with the Client ID Regulations of the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society.

If you decide to proceed with a transaction, be sure to go to the bank website to verify branch transit number, address and phone number on the cheque. Wait until the bank confirms that the funds are legitimate and are safe to withdraw from the deposit. Overall, where possible in transactions, use the Bank of Canada’s Lynx system (formerly the Large Value Transfer System (LVTS)), an electronic funds transfer system that allows large payments to be exchanged securely and immediately.

For tips to avoid being victimized, read a list of "Red Flags”, and visit the Fraud section on To report or seek advice on dealing with fraud and scam attempts, contact Cynthia Nield at or 902 423 1300, x346.