$1.7M fraud scheme leads to charges, police looking for more victims

EDMONTON — Police have charged a Sherwood Park man for allegedly defrauding multiple people of more than $1.7 million, and they believe there may be more victims.

The frauds happened between February 2016 and March 2019, and allegedly involve a man named Nickolas Ellis, 50, who is reported to have defrauded several people of amounts ranging from tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars.

According to the Edmonton Police Service, Ellis used various schemes in the fraud, including claims of partnerships with NHL players and other local and national organizations.

The victims were asked to invest in items or events where the sale would result in significant financial returns. The scammer apparently used a variety of tactics, including impersonating professionals in emails, to convince victims to invest.

Police have confirmed that none of the organizations were aware of any of the investment partnerships, and the products and events intended for sale did not exist.

On Jan. 28, 2021, Ellis was arrested and charged with 13 counts of fraud over $5,000, three counts of fraud under $5,000, three counts of personation, three counts of uttering a forged document, and personating a peace officer.

Police believe there may be other people who were victims of this scam. Anyone who believes they may have been defrauded in a similar manner is asked to call EPS at 780-423-4567 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477. 

Correction:

Previous information released by the Edmonton Police Service indicated that Ellis was arrested on Jan. 28, 2020. They have since clarified that he was arrested on Jan. 28, 2021.

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