Date First Reported: April 2013

Primary Name Associated: Akai Han

Description of Potential Fraud:


[Updated Dec 2013]

Five Ontario lawyers have notified us that they’ve received an email from the purported Akai Han looking to retain them with regards to a breach of a business loan agreement. This is similar to other frauds of this kind we have seen. For a full description of how this fraud works and to see other names attached to it, see our Confirmed Fraud page that deals with business loan frauds.

Here is the initial email:

From: Akai Han [mailto:[email protected]]
Sent: April-03-13 2:21 AM
Subject: RE: Litigation

Hi , I am Akai and I wish to file a lawsuit aganist an associate and long time friend . This concerns an agreement that she broken or refused to honour . .


Replying to the email brought this response and fake documentation:

Thanks for the response to my email. I am deeply sorry about the delay in responding to your email . I had a severe relapse . I have a medical condition that keeps me hospitalized until I am able to get some strength back . I provided a friend of mine Sarah Lee a business loan in the amount of $350,000 while she was on a business visit here in Japan. She needed this loan to complete/facilitate payment & purchase of farm machinery and equipment . From our last correspondence she currently resides in your city. The loan was for 12 months and interest rate of 7.85%. The capital and interest were supposed to be paid on April 15th, 2011 but she has only paid $70,000 and has an outstanding balance of about $280,000 plus interest.

I have known her for over 4 years prior to granting her the loan. We have also done business in the past without any issues. I am in constant contact with her and even though she has promised to pay the balance, I think the threat or possibility of litigation would serve as a catalyst to make her pay sooner rather than later. Find attached the Loan Agreement and Payment Receipt.

I expect this to be a non-litigation collection from the borrower but I am prepared to litigate this matter if she is not ready to pay the balance owed . This loan is not in dispute. The present economic down turn has been cited by her as the reason for delayed payment. She has continually requested for more time, however I strongly believe that the introduction of legal pressure may initiate immediate payment from her.

I know there is a lawyer-client retainer fee that may be paid in the process of the exercise, pending your conditions. Kindly, send me an engagement letter so that we can proceed with this issue with her. I want to also let you know that as a business owner (IEMGB Japan) this loan I gave to her has caused some strain on my capital. I am open to either an hourly or contingency fee basis. Please advice which works better for you.

Akai Ryo Han



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 [email protected].

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.

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Fraud Fact Sheet More 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.