Casablanca Police Arrest Frauds Selling Fake Hajj Visas

Rabat- Casablanca’s judiciary police have arrested seven individuals suspected of fraud, including three brothers selling forged Hajj visas to pilgrims.According to the General Directorate of National Security (DGSN), the suspects were involved with a criminal ring specializing in fraud and manipulation. They were arrested on August 17 and 18 in Casablanca; Inezgane, near Agadir; and Oualidia village, south of Casablanca near El Jadida.The ring is allegedly engaged in criminal activities: hacking into systems and accessing personal data, such as bank accounts from European countries, to transfer money. In the homes of the suspects, the police found technological equipment and items such as victims’ bank receipts and SIM cards the group used to carry out fraudulent phone calls.The three brothers, Zakaria, Abdelkarim, and Yassir Asenghour, have allegedly distributed fake moujamala (Hajj visas) and fake plane tickets for pilgrims heading to Saudi Arabia.Abdelkarim allegedly produced a total of 200 falsified visas for the fake passports provided to him by another accomplice, Mohamed Ouchen. The visa forger and passport forger allegedly received MAD 1.3 million and 1.4 million in exchange for their forgeries.The DGSN reports that on the eve of Ramadan, Abdelkarim sold plane tickets to Ouchen for umrah (the pilgrimage to Mecca performed at any time of the year). However since some of the tickets were cancelled, Abdelkarim promised to compensate Ouchen for the loss by making fake moujamala visas.The suspects were all placed in custody under the supervision of the public prosecutor for further investigation. read more

Welland crash victim Joe Mellen a prankster

(Update)Constable Joe Mellen had been on the Niagara police force for nine years. He had just finished a 12-hour shift in Niagara Falls — and was heading home to Welland when the crash happened.We are the at the Niagara Falls detachment. Joe Mellen’s platoon was supposed to start another 12-hour shift. However – the entire platoon is being given the night off and other officers are filling in for them.Constable Joe Mellen was the kind of guy who lived life to the fullest. There are all kinds of videos on YouTube of him playing and singing music.Here he is dancing up a storm.Chief Jeff McGuire: “He was also a great fun guy to be around. And everything I’ve learned is that he’s one of those guys who will be sorely missed.”Mellen brought comic relief to the job.Cst. Cliff Priest: “A very fun loving guy.  Policing is serious business and he could always see the light side of it.”Cliff Priest worked with Mellen in the traffic unit. Mellen also served in Grimsby before coming to Niagara Falls.He grew up in Welland. Was a divorced father of two children, ages five and seven. The chief visited his parents and sister today. They are devastated.Joe Serriani: “I couldn’t even imagine what his children would be even thinking. Having a daughter myself, my heart is just broken for them.”Even though the crash was on the highway, officers from the Welland detachment also responded. They saw the smashed motorcycle and when they ran the plate they knew then the victim was their friend and fellow officer Joe Mellen.Cst. Priest: “It’s so different when it’s someone you know. Not only someone you know but you know very well and you’ve worked with, can lead to all sorts of trauma.”Normally, Joe Mellen wouldn’t be going home at 5 in the morning, but he clocked out a little earlier. It was very busy in Niagara Falls last night and he just didn’t have time to take his lunch break. read more