07/15/2016 07:12 EDT | Updated 07/15/2016 08:59 EDT

Amer Saka, Ontario Priest, Allegedly Steals $500,000 Raised For Refugees

Amer Saka was arrested on Wednesday.

LONDON, Ont. — A priest in London, Ont., has been charged with fraud in the alleged theft of more than $500,000 meant for refugees.

Police say Amer Saka of St. Joseph Chaldean Catholic Church allegedly obtained the money from over 20 people under the guise of a sponsorship program to bring refugee families into Canada.

Police in London, Ont. say that a priest from St. Joseph Chaldean Catholic Church took hundreds of thousands of dollars that donors thought was for refugees. (Photo: Facebook/St. Joseph Chaldean Catholic Church)

London police say the investigation began in February with the co-operation of the Hamilton Catholic Diocese and spanned throughout Ontario, the United States and other countries where refugees were trying to come to Canada.

Saka, 51, was arrested on Wednesday and faces two charges — fraud exceeding $5,000 and possess proceeds of property or thing exceeding $5,000.

The investigation is ongoing and anyone who may have had dealings with Saka is encouraged to contact London police.

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