Wednesday November 22, 2017 – Peterborough man facing additional charges in student housing rental scam investigation

Media Release for Wednesday November 22, 2017
Calls for Service:
(Nov. 21 at 8 a.m. to Nov. 22 at 8 a.m.) 57

Additional Charges in Fraud Investigation:
A 45-year-old Peterborough man is facing additional charges in an ongoing fraud investigation into a student housing rental scam.

On November 21, 2017 further information was provided to police reporting that the accused had accepted first and last month’s rent from two further victims for a room at a King Street residence with a move-in date of November 1, 2017 knowing that he would be unable to have the building permits completed and the property signed off by the Peterborough Fire Department and other agencies by that date. The two victims provided the accused with a deposit but were never able to move into the residence.

As a result of the investigation Sean Paul Cowling, 45, of King Street, Peterborough, is facing the following additional charges:

  • Fraud under $5,000 X2
  • Obtaining by false pretences X2

The accused remains in custody and is scheduled to appear again in court today (Nov. 22). The new charges will be read at this appearance.

On September 27, 2017 a Fire Prevention Officer from the Peterborough Fire Services attended the residence and as a result numerous charges were laid under the Fire Code. The accused was advised that the property was not to be occupied as a rooming house.

The investigation is ongoing. Police believe there may still be other victims and are encouraging anyone with similar concerns or experience to come forward and call the Peterborough Police Service at 705-876-1122.

Possession of stolen property Arrests:
The Peterborough Police Service has arrested and charged two men following an investigation into stolen snow plow equipment from a local company.

Earlier in November 2017 the Peterborough Police Service began an investigation into more than $15,000 worth of snow plow equipment that was fraudulently purchased from a Peterborough company and then listed for sale on line.

On November 16, 2017 two males believed to be in possession of the stolen equipment were located at a North York self-storage unit. A search warrant to enter the storage unit was obtained and the stolen property was located and seized.

As a result of the investigation the following persons were arrested and charged:

Arif Syed, 35, of Rue Gold, Saint-Laurent, Quebec, is charged with the following:

  • Possession of property obtained by crime over $5,000

Shea Flemmings, 32, of Wingarden Street, Scarborough, is charged with the following:

  • Possession of property obtained by crime over $5,000

Both accused were released from custody and are scheduled to appear in a Peterborough court on December 17, 2017.