A former Burnaby immigration consultant has agreed to give up his licence over a $70,000 kickback he got for persuading a client to make an investment.
Kwang Woo Richard Park had encouraged the client, a man emigrating from China, to make the investment but hadn’t told him he would be getting a commission off it.
In a decision last month, the College of Immigration and Citizenship Consultants (formerly the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council) accepted a declaration from Park that he would never work as an immigration consultant again.
“This is a serious matter, and I am satisfied that the revocation of Mr. Park’s licence is within the range of reasonable outcomes,” discipline committee chair Laurie Sanford said in the ruling.
Sanford noted Park would have faced further allegations if the case had gone to a hearing.
Those allegations were outlined in a November 2016 notice announcing the case was being referred to the discipline committee.
It said Park was hired in 2013 and received a total of $34,605 for helping a client emigrate from China.
Park had described himself to the man as a senior immigration consultant who could “recommend investment projects that would produce stable benefits.”
He had suggested the client enrol in the B.C. Provincial Nominee Program, which helps immigrants who can invest in new businesses in the province become permanent residents.
Park and a business owner had then convinced the client to invest $400,000 ($100,000 repayable on demand) for a 35 per cent share in a company.
Once the investment was made, the client had sold his business and apartment in China and moved to B.C. with his wife and son, according to the notice.
It wasn’t until later that he discovered a payment of $70,000 had been made from the company’s corporate account to Park’s business, Future Link Inc.
The client later also discovered “the corporation’s initial financial statements did not convey the true standing of the business,” according the notice.
The client had been asked to invest another $200,000 in August 2014, and when he refused, he was told the company was prepared to declare bankruptcy within half a year.
The client demanded repayment of the refundable $100,000 in March 2015, but the payment was not made, according to the notice.
When lawyers tried to get in touch with Park after that, the notice said he was “non-responsive.”
The client, meanwhile, was unable to fulfill the terms of the B.C. Provincial Nominee Program due to “the nature” of the business, according to the notice.
None of the allegations in the notice were tested at a hearing, and Park and the client reached a settlement, according to the ruling last month.
Part of the settlement was Park’s declaration, in which he admitted he had gotten a commission for the client’s investment and promised never to work as an immigration consultant again.