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Conviction Obtained in Human Trafficking and Human Smuggling Investigation

Source: Alberta Police Report

Calgary, Alberta – In Provincial Court in Edmonton today, Kihew Energy Services Ltd. (Kihew), an Alberta based Company, entered a guilty plea to Section 117 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Organizing Entry into Canada). Kihew received a 215,000 dollar fine as a sentence. The fine is to be paid to Lakeland College, Alberta. Lakeland College was unknowingly utilized by Kihew in the commission of the offense.

Charges against;

John Lipinski, age 43 of St. Paul, Alberta (Director of Kihew);

Angela Lipinski, age 42 of St. Paul, Alberta (Spouse of John Lipinski), and;

Calvin Steinhauer, age 38 of Goodfish Lake, Alberta, (Director of Kihew), were withdrawn.

The investigation, conducted by the RCMP Immigration Unit in Calgary and prosecuted by the Public Prosecution Service of Canada, Alberta (Edmonton), found that Kihew placed ads in a Polish newspaper and a website to recruit European welders and machinists to come to work in Canada.

The first group of foreign workers arrived in December, 2005. In total, sixty foreign workers arrived in Alberta. The investigation found that an arrangement was made between Kihew and an individual who was employed at Lakeland College. The individual, who has since been terminated by the College, sent letters to Canada Immigration and Citizenship confirming the Foreign Nationals as students for training in welding and English as a Second Language (ESL). Lakeland College had no knowledge of the actions of the employee. Only a few of the foreign workers attended a few classes of ESL at the College; however, none of the foreign workers attended the College for technical welding classes as was indicated on the student visas.

The foreign workers were contracted out by Kihew to several northern Alberta businesses. Kihew charged these businesses a high hourly rate of pay for the services of each foreign worker. However, Kihew paid the foreign workers a substantially lower rate of pay. It is alleged that Kihew profited approximately 1,000,000.00 dollars through 2006 by sub-contracting the foreign workers.

The RCMP worked closely in partnership with Citizenship and Immigration Canada throughout the investigtation.

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