A man accused of wiping out the bank accounts of his former partner and her father, leaving both in financial ruin, is being sought by police.
Thirteen months ago, Jennifer Bourdages was looking for love and admits her chosen venue to find it was a bit unconventional.
“I met him on a sugar daddy website,” she told CityNews of the website which connects wealthy men with women looking for stability.
That’s where she met “Nik.”
“At first, we would chat for a few hours a day and then we decided to meet up,” she explained.
Bourdages said Nik told her he was a well connected billionaire from Russia and immediately began promising her the world.
“He said he was going to buy me a Maserati and told me to put it in my name and he’d make all the payments,” she said. “He also went out and bought my dream diamond ring for me.”
Three weeks after they met, the two got married in the living room of an Oakville home Nik supposedly bought for them. Days later, the honeymoon turned into a nightmare.
“A week after we got married that’s when I saw the real him.”
Bourdages said Nik never allowed her to check the mail or the bills. She quickly found out the reason why.
The Maserati, the diamond ring were all purchased in Bourdages’ name and she said the payments were not being made.
The Maserati and at least one other car have since been repossessed.
As for the home they lived in that Nik told her he bought? It was rented, using Bourdages’ name and the rent hadn’t been paid in months. She also discovered her savings accounts had been drained.
“When I first met him, I had $140,000 in my savings account. That’s all gone.”
There are also credit cards she didn’t even know about which have been maxed out to the tune of $117,000. Bourdages also found out their marriage was never made official.
Credit scores ruined, lives destroyed
Then there’s Bourdages’ father, Leonard Scott. “My life is destroyed, It’s ruined,” he said.
Scott, who is disabled, moved in with the couple months after they got together. He said Nik took his information to open all sorts of accounts, auto loans and credit cards.
“Right now, on my credit report, it shows I am around $160,000 in debt. When I came here in April, I was about $13,000 in debt.”
Both of their credit scores are in ruin.
Scott and his daughter had approached Nik about unpaid bills in the past, but they say he always had an excuse.
“He’d say his money is tied up but it’s coming, and told us not to worry,” Bourdages said.
“He would put money into our accounts, but days later it would be returned as non-sufficient funds,” Scott added.
Both Bourdages and Scott showed CityNews pages and pages of account details showing deposits made and then yanked out, marked as NSF.
Scott was also sent emails from what appeared to be official bank and government representatives, sent to him to ease his concerns.
“One of those emails states that I was absolved of all debt by the Supreme Court, but that was fraudulent and I believe drafted by him.”
Needless to say Bourdages dream of being swept away by a billionaire quickly turned into anything but. In hindsight, she admits there was a clear warning sign.
“His story wasn’t checking out,” she said. “When we met his family, who lived in Toronto, they kept calling him Steve, not Nik.”
Suspect previously arrested in human trafficking investigation
Bourdages also uncovered another big secret. The man she loved had been arrested in June 2020, long before the two met.
“He told me that because he was a billionaire, a woman made up fake charges against him because she was trying to extort him,” she said, adding she bought the story at the time but now wishes she hadn’t.
That woman, a 20-year-old in Toronto, accused him of not only opening up multiple bank accounts in her name and racking up huge bills but she also alleges he forced her to work in the sex industry. His name is not Nik, it’s Steve Coelho and he’s not from Russia but from Toronto’s west end. He’s not a billionaire and he’s wanted for violating probation after his first arrest.
Halton Police also confirmed they are looking to arrest Coelho after the allegations brought forth by Bourdages and her father.
“The accused is still wanted and investigators are attempting to locate and arrest him,” said Cst. Steve Elms. “We are asking anyone with information regarding his whereabouts to call our non-emergency line at 905-825-4777. Tips can also be submitted anonymously to Crime Stoppers. at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or through the web at http://www.haltoncrimestoppers.ca.”
While Bourdages and her father wait for justice, they now face an uphill battle. They have no money and soon will have no place to live.
“With the credit that we have now, nobody is going to want to rent to us,” Scott said.
“I am asking friends for mini-loans so we don’t have to go to a shelter because we have until January 1 to find a place to live,” Bourdages said.
In total, the two are in debt a combined half a million dollars. They’ve both tried to work with the banks and other creditors but due to the fact that the bills are in their names, they’re being offered no help.
“The only thing we can hope for is he is brought forth to answer these charges,” Bourdages said. “I don’t want any other woman to go through what we did.”