A lawyer in Ontario and one in New York have reported to us that they’ve been contacted by the purported David Honghui of China Resources Machinery with regards to retaining their services to collect on a breach of a license agreement. It is nearly identical to scams under the names David Yamaguchi and Dan Nagasakii.
This is another bad cheque fraud in which the ‘customer’ accused of breaching the lease agreement will no doubt also quickly send a (counterfeit) cheque for damages to the lawyers office, and the lawyer will be asked to wire the funds (minus fees and costs) to an offshore account. See our Fraud Fact Sheet for more information on how these scams work and how to spot them.
Here is an example of the initial contact email:
From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: March-03-12 4:16 PM
To: lawyer name
Subject: IP Rights Violation
I am contacting you in regards to a breach of license agreement, unfair
competition, and trademark infringement with a client in your locale.
Our client was granted an exclusive license to use and modify our Chinese
language software products to create and manufacture English
language versions of the Products and derivative products in the English
language, and the exclusive rights to distribute the English language
versions of the Products throughout Canada. However, it was later
uncovered that our client was equally manufacturing the Spanish language
of our product without license. In addition, our client was equally
distributing the unauthorized products within and to other regions outside
Canada and this is a complete violation of our agreed terms.
On behalf of my company, I will like to enforce our intellectual property
rights with respect to the unauthorized production of the versions of our
products in Spanish language and the unauthorized distribution of the
products within and to other regions outside Canada.
If these falls under the scope of your practice and my request could be
reasonably accommodated, please contact me as soon as possible so that I
can provide you with further details.
Otherwise, if you are not in a position to assist on these issues, your
advice on the appropriate measures to take could be of assistance.
I will appreciate your prompt response. Thank you.
China Resources Machinery Company Ltd
26 Harbour Road
Wanchai Hong Kong
How to handle a real or suspected fraud
If you have been targeted by any of these frauds, please forward any of the emails and supporting documents that you have received to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you suspect you are acting on a matter that might be a fraud, call LAWPRO at 1-800-410-1013 (416-598-5899). We will talk you through the common fraud scenarios we are seeing and help you spot red flags that may indicate you are being duped. This will help you ask appropriate questions of your client to determine if the matter is legitimate or not. If the matter you are acting on turns out to be a fraud and there is a potential claim, we will work with you to prevent the fraud and minimize potential claims costs.
If you have been successfully duped, please immediately notify LAWPRO as there may be a claim against you.
For more immediate updates on fraud and claims prevention, subscribe to the email or RSS feed updates from LAWPRO’s AvoidAClaim blog.
Fraud Fact SheetMore fraud prevention information and resources are available on the practicePRO Fraud page, including the Fraud Fact Sheet, a handy reference for lawyers and law firm staff that describes the common frauds and the red flags that can help identify them.