Sunday, August 29, 2010

James Garrow's "Pink Pagoda" Program

The article over the weekend in the Guelph-Mercury News on James/Jim Garrow allows me to finally come forward with what I know about James and his "Pink Pagoda" program. I became aware of Jim in early June 2008 when an article published by "Mimi Magazine" was forwarded to me. This article, still available on Garrow's website, goes into his "Pink Pagoda" program, a program that supposedly has brought over 24,000 baby girls into China's orphanages.

The sheer number of children Garrow claims to have "saved" raised red flags in my mind of course. 24,000 children (now supposedly 34,000) represents approximately half of all the children adopted internationally from China since 2000. But the basic assertion -- that Garrow's employees were passing out vouchers in China's countryside offering financial payments for relinquishing a child -- fits very comfortably into what we know about incentive programs in China generally. In other words, one could not dismiss his assertions out of hand.

The following day, I called Jim,1 using an alias of "Lance Davis" (I suspected he may have already heard of Brian Stuy, and thus wanted to use an unknown alias), an adoptive father with a child from Xiushan, Chongqing. I asked him about his "Pink Pagoda" program, and how exactly it worked. He largely confirmed what was written in the Mimi article, but added a few new insights. In our conversation he admitted that he worked extensively in Chongqing Municipality, particularly with the Chongqing City orphanage. Readers of our subscription blog know that most of the Chongqing-area orphanages display patterns consistent with "non-random" findings, so Garrow's assertion that he works in Shapingba and other areas of Chongqing was plausible. According to Garrow, he is responsible for 80% of the children that have been adopted from the Chongqing area, especially from the Chongqing and Fuling orphanages.

video

James Garrow's claim that he is protected by politically powerful people inside China is also very interesting. In the following interview he goes into this in more detail, revealing that his protector is none other than Hu Jintao, China's President. According to Garrow, President Hu's niece attended one of Garrow's schools in Shenzhen, where they met. Also according to Garrow, connections resulted from this meeting, as well as from the "Lucky Money" (bribes) envelopes that he subsequently "liberally" dispersed to various officials.

video

During this time I contacted a number of press outlets to initiate an investigation into Garrow's program. It was hoped that either the press or the Canadian government (who was also notified) could thoroughly investigate the situation without alerting Jim. Unfortunately, in the midst of this Jane Liedtke was made aware of Jim's program, and began to raise concerns on her various adoption groups and newsletters (I got Jim's side of that issue in the second conversation). This caused Jim to begin removing references to his program from his websites and to begin covering his tracks.

At the end of the second interview, Garrow introduces another program that he had just started the previous April (and which he completely denies in the Guelph-Mercury article) -- the smuggling of Chinese infants directly into Canada and the United States. At the time of our conversation he alleged that he had smuggled over 30 children to Canadian and U.S. families, which then re-adopted the children (using fabricated paperwork). We arranged another phone call to go more into that program. I edited this interview to eliminate the caller's voice out of safety concerns. For that reason, the conversation tends to jump as questions are asked, but the details of Garrow's smuggling program are evident.

video

It is clear from Garrow's account that what he says is possible. Having had experience with immigration procedures myself, it is very possible to see how immigration officials would not pay close attention to infant visas, allowing someone like Garrow to smuggle a child using a Chinese student.

Is James Garrow really doing what he says he is doing, offering poor Chinese families money vouchers to turn their children into the orphanages for international adoption? It is very possible. Is he doing it with the full knowledge of the Chinese government? Also possible. As we saw in the Hunan scandal, the government is less concerned with stopping the baby-buying than it is with saving face in the international community. The abduction of children unwillingly from birth parents seems to be taken seriously by the CCAA and the rest of the government; but the willing relinquishment of children for money to IA orphanages is systematically ignored, and even encouraged by the government. Thus, there is every possibility that the Chinese would allow a program such as Garrow's "Pink Pagoda" one to operate freely in China's orphanages.

In the end I don't know if Jim Garrow is actually doing what he says, or is simply seeking attention and money. Reporters from the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, as well as Dateline have investigated and found no substantiation of his program in China. But it could be happening on a localized and informal basis. What is needed is for someone to look seriously at these assertions: Did the Bethune Institute pay students to smuggle infants into Canada between March and June 2008? If so, who adopted these children? Has anyone in the Canadian Government audited the citizenship applications for Chinese children adopted in 2008? What about Chongqing? Has anyone investigated Garrow's claims about funneling infants through vouchers into the Chongqing and Fuling orphanages? This program, if indeed it exists, is not a new program -- advertisements for his "Certification Programs" discuss his "Pink Pagoda" program as far back as 2004. There must be many people aware of his "voucher" (baby-buying) program in these areas, if it exists.

In the end it may be that Garrow is a fraud, and to be ignored (it is easy to claim a Nobel Peace Prize nomination, for example, since the nominees aren't revealed for 50 years). But if what he says is accurate, it would mean that the entire China adoption program since 2000 existed largely as a result of children being purchased for "significant" sums of money by orphanages, working in connection with a Christian crusader driven to "save China's children", and fully supported and protected by the President of China himself.

_______________________

1) All phone calls were recorded by myself, and are protected activity under Federal law, since Utah is a one-party State under Federal taping guidelines(http://www.pimall.com/nais/n.tel.tape.law.html; http://floridalawfirm.com/privacy.html). These recordings were sent to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and are part of their investigation.

31 comments:

Kristen said...

One of the more interesting parts of the article in the Toronto paper was this... and it was surrounded by comments by you on other things. Just wondering if you know anything about these reports or have access to the specifics on these? Was this in Hunan, Guizhou or where? I guess you already know about this? Please elaborate. I would also question why this man would effect the entire China adoption program since 2000. Is this because of the numbers of babies he is claiming to have "saved?"

Kristen in Tampa, FL


"There are reports some family planning officers in China have stolen children or coerced families into giving up their children in order to sell them for a cut of the international adoption fee."

Research-China.Org said...

I am sure that statement relates to the Guizhou (Zhenyuan) story, as well as the Dutch documentary about Shaoyang in Hunan. And yes, if it is true that Garrow was involved in paying for 24,000 parents to relinquish their children, that would impact nearly half of the program. The assertion isn't that half of the children came into orphanages through baby-buying programs, which is almost certainly true irrespective of Garrow or his program. But to have one person behind all of those programs would be truly astounding.

Anonymous said...

The media sources you say investigated but did not find evidence of Garrow, can you explain whether they investigated in China or not? Why didn't they report about him as a fraud if they found no evidence? Wouldn't that be news worthy?

Research-China.Org said...

Garrow's treatment by the media points to a larger problem that exists: Reporters are given a story to investigate, contacts to interview, and a very limited amount of time in which to do it. Additionally, they are not allowed by journalism ethics to talk to anyone without revealing that they are a reporter. The constraints of time and not being able to go "undercover" makes getting a story such as Garrow's very difficult, as you can imagine. Few newspapers, etc., can devote months to doing such an investigation. Plus, they must be careful, as the Guelph-Mercury was, to not say anything that could result in libel action being taken. This makes most journalists very cautious.

Brian

Anonymous said...

I have only had time to listen to the first interview, but that was just unbelievable. I can't believe he thinks he is "saving" babies by buying them. I would love to ask him why he assumes the only other alternative for the baby is death.

Kristen said...

Do you think Garrow is an arrogant nutcase or does your gut say he really did this or not? It's pretty hard to fathom he could accomplish all of this. He appears to be an expert conman in China and Canada and it's good the RCMP has their eye on him. Maybe the Chinese do as well. Maybe that's why he isn't in China. Didn't they close his Shenzhen school? He seems to like publicity too which really makes him seem nutty.

Re:coercion by family planning officials.... I guess this was reported in Barbara Demick's story earlier in the year.
Do you know of other orphanages in other provinces than Guizhou and Hunan that have participated in this? Do you have any hunches about how widespread this could be? Wondered about this for awhile and the connection to hospitals.. surely the quotas are partially enforced inside and monitored through clinics and hospitals right? Could the government hospitals be the go-between on this coercion?

Kristen

Anonymous said...

Brian:

I have not followed this man or read anything about him, but I did listen to all 3 recordings. I'll admit I'm naive, but he does sound very believeable. My question for you is if what he says is true and these Chinese families want to give up these daughters, in order to live and perhaps have a better life in the West, then why does he have to pay any money to the families at all? Using this logic, they should be giving him their children for free or perhaps even paying him.

Whatever the truth is, he is a fascinating guy. Is there anyway to verify his background as a previous high school principal and head of a college in Canada? Any of your Canadian sources able to verify this info? Just curious.

Research-China.Org said...

Kristen:

I am unable to eliminate either possibility. He could be a nutcase, and I would believe that if someone did an investigation and came to that conclusion. However, he brings too many facts into his story -- Doctors Without Borders, his reaction when I mentioned the Fuling orphanage, his reluctance to accept any money for a smuggled baby until the baby was delivered -- to convince me he is a total conman.

As far as Family Planning is concerned, stories such as those found in Shaoyang and Zhenyuan are very common. In our research into individual orphanages, one can find aggressive Family Planning episodes in a majority of cities. In one city in Jiangxi, the Family Planning boasted of their success in confiscating children and turning them into the orphanage.

Anonymous: I do have documents supporting much of Garrow's story. For example, Garrow was professionally censored in 2002 (at that time he was a teacher in the Upper Canada School District) for "abusing students physically, sexually, verbally, psychologically or emotionally." He was suspended and fined.
(http://www.oct.ca/investigations_hearings/decision_summaries/june_02/dec_garrow.aspx?lang=en-CA)

Brian

Kristen said...

But aggressive family planning doesn't always include

"...coercing families into giving up their children in order to sell them for a cut of the international adoption fee."

Is this what you are saying is happening in multiple China provinces.. even provinces beyong Hunan and Guizhou? Do you have evidence of this coercion involving IA fees through family planning?
You mention Jianxi Family planning aggressiveness but no mention of money changing hands there.
Do you think this money/coercion chain of events with family planning is throughout China?
Is this just typical of Family planning corruption all over CHina?
DO you see how the govt hospitals could be involved in the middle of this?

This means the Hague convention is a worthless piece of paper and China adoption isn't that different from Cambodia and Vietnam. It's just govt sanctioned to steal children in China.
Very very scary and not presented this way to all of the APs who have adopted.
Wonder how many adoption agencies are already aware of this but not sharing this info.

Research-China.Org said...

It would be nice if the government officials would freely admit that they were confiscating babies for the IA money, but sadly they don't. But the pattern we see in Guizhou and Hunan is seen in many, many places -- Family Planning aggressively pursues families (often families that are simply visiting an area, and not residents) to impose high fees or to simply confiscate children to turn into the orphanage.

The Hague Agreement is just a piece of paper, and China pays little respect to it. China has demonstrated repeatedly that the driving force in their program is the funding from Western families. It is clear that the CCAA allows Family Planning abuses, baby-buying and other incentive programs, while simultaneously denying domestic families access for adoption. All of these are violations of the Hague Agreement.

Brian

Anonymous said...

The Hague agreement actually says zip about government/political policy coercion in separating children from families, as has happened for over twenty years in the wake of government population policies. If it did, China would never have signed it. The only offense strongly emphasized in the Hague is money exchanging hands and criminal kidnapping, plus a fairly mild statement indicating a preference for domestic placement.

In my view the latter has been violated in every IA adoption of a healthy child since 1999, if not longer. One of the clearest trends linked to IA money in violation of the spirit of the Hague, is that it has in some places pushed out legally qualified Chinese adopters in orphanage adoptions in favor of richer foreigners. Brian wrote about this in this blog a few years ago. It is still happening. Every healthy younger child that is in an orphanage today could no doubt be adopted domestically.

Kristen - I think that birth planning coercion is widespread though not necessarily everywhere. The policy itself is inherently coercive by any international standards.

In the few cases of actual confiscation that I know of personally, the coercion was primarily about Birth Planning and top-down administrative policies that result in local officials being fined, demoted, losing their salary for poor performance in population control work. Docking local officials for poor performance in birth planning creates a strong political and monetary incentive for local officials to find ways to prevent or eliminate over quota children from their area, including coercion and crossing the line between what is legal and illegal. While being overly coercive in birth planning is only rarely punished, or is punished only lightly, being lax is sometimes severely punished.

Brian - aside from Gaoping, Guizhou and Shaoyang, can you send a link to any articles or blogs etc. talking about the confiscation of birth children elsewhere? The case in jiangxi that you mention? Or adoptive children? It is usually the latter and not the former who are confiscated. In Gaoping the officials were able to claim that all except one of the seized children was known to them as an "illegally adopted child." This made the seizures legal. As I recall seven of the eleven were unregistered adopted children, 4 were hidden unregistered birth children. Frankly I don't know what difference it makes, but it is a legal cover for this behavior.

So far Guizhou is one of the few known examples of local officials admitting that the (illegal) local birth planning policy was to confiscate birth children if fines could not be paid; in these cases there was no fig leaf that these were illegal adoptions of foundlings. I'd love to see evidence of other cases of this, e.g. in Jiangxi.

Thanks,

Kay

Anonymous said...

Kristen,

The Hague agreement actually says zip about government/political policy coercion in separating children from families, as has happened for over twenty years in the wake of government population policies. If it did, China would never have signed it. The only offense strongly emphasized in the Hague is money exchanging hands and criminal kidnapping, plus a fairly mild statement indicating a preference for domestic placement.

In my view the latter has been violated in every IA adoption of a healthy child since 1999, if not longer. One of the clearest trends linked to IA money in violation of the spirit of the Hague, is that it has in some places pushed out legally qualified Chinese adopters in orphanage adoptions in favor of richer foreigners. Brian wrote about this in this blog a few years ago. It is still happening. Every healthy younger child that is in an orphanage today could no doubt be adopted domestically.

Brian - aside from Gaoping, Guizhou and Shaoyang, can you send a link (here or off-line) to any articles or blogs etc. talking about the confiscation of birth children elsewhere? The case in jiangxi that you mention? Or more seizures of adoptive children? It is usually the latter and not the former who are confiscated. In Gaoping the officials were able to claim that all except one of the seized children was known to them as an "illegally adopted child." As I recall seven of the eleven were unregistered adopted children, 4 were hidden unregistered birth children. Frankly I don't know what difference it makes, but it is a legal cover for this behavior.

So far Guizhou is one of the few known examples of local officials admitting that the (illegal) local birth planning policy was to confiscate birth children if fines could not be paid; in these cases there was no fig leaf that these were illegal adoptions of foundlings. I'd love to see evidence of other cases of this, e.g. in Jiangxi.

Thanks,

Kay

Research-China.Org said...

Kay:

Thanks for posting. You are a respected voice in the adoption community, and your opinion matters greatly in this debate.

I think we are on safe ground in saying that FP campaigns target unregistered children, which are often informal adoptions (which, as you know, are common as dirt) but also unregistered biological children.

Here are some links that I have collected over the years as we do the birth parent reports for individual orphanages.

Jinjiang, Fujian:
http://blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_4b7f21540100bc0d.html

Xiushui, Jiangxi:
http://www.xiushui.gov.cn/sys/Article/ArticleShow.asp?ArticleID=348

Guangchang, Jiangxi:
http://www.jxnews.com.cn/jxfzb/system/2006/11/13/002372282.shtml

I'm sure there are others, but those come to mind.

Thanks for posting, and I look forward to any other insights you might share.

Brian

Kristen said...

Thank you Kay and Brian for sharing both of your perspectives on this.

Kay says:
"So far Guizhou is one of the few known examples of local officials admitting that the (illegal) local birth planning policy was to confiscate birth children if fines could not be paid."

Family planning officials are not going to admit to this voluntarily. Especially when the CCAA is ignoring and tolerating it. It's likely more widespread than found given the reluctance to admit it.

This is all very very sad for everyone. It means that China IA is driven by international adoption money. It means some IA babies are stolen from their Chinese families. And the one child policy, CCAA and family planning are abusing Chinese families in ways beyond what we originally knew (as if forced abortions and sterilization weren't bad enough). No wonder trafficking exists when govt officials and orphanages are so corrupt they steal children. Not a surprise trafficking exists when the govt ignores it's own corruption.

The govt hospitals must be involved. The clinics are involved in Hohhot in the past. If a child is over quota it makes sense that family planning is operating out of hospitals and clinics. Enforcing through the use of IUDs and sterilization and birth quotas has to involve clinics and hospitals to do these procedures.

The Army hospital xuan chuan bu says my daughter's birthmother does not want to be found. This means they wants to hide the truth. Perhaps she is an overquota birth, she was "abandoned" at 2 months old, if her mother couldn't pay the fine, perhaps they forced her to relinquish her child at the army hospital. I have already found ties between the orphanage and the hospital. If there was coercion, it explains why the hospital xuan chuan bu says she does not want to be found.Either they don't know who the birthmother is and can't help me with more info or they coerced her . If they didn't know, they would say they didn't have any info. They are hiding the truth.

This sure gives new meaning to "left at the orphanage gate" or left at the hospital, doesn't it?

My heart breaks for these Chinese families. How many IA families will keep believing their adopted children were really abandoned and not taken by family planning? And adoption agencies perpetuate this propaganda. There are some cases of abandonment but how do we know the truth? Will we ever know this? Not likely in many cases. Not unless the birth parents tell us. And I hope we find them and they do tell us.
It sure makes me even more determined to search for my daughter's birthparents knowing that the possibility of coercion exists.

Kristen

Kristen said...

Thank you Brian and Kay for your insights and perspective.

This is all very very sad for everyone. It means that China IA is driven by international adoption money. It means some IA babies are stolen from their Chinese families. And the one child policy, CCAA and family planning are abusing Chinese families in ways beyond what we originally knew (as if forced abortions and sterilization weren't bad enough). No wonder trafficking exists when govt officials and orphanages are so corrupt they steal children.

My heart breaks for these Chinese families who wanted to keep these children. How many IA families will keep believing their adopted children were really abandoned and not taken by family planning? And adoption agencies perpetuate this propaganda. There are some true cases of abandonment but how do we know which are true? Will we ever know this? Not likely in many cases. Not unless the birth parents tell us. And I hope we find them and they do tell us.

It sure makes me even more determined to search for my daughter's birthparents knowing the possibility of coercion exists.

Kristen

Anonymous said...

Thanks Brian. Several things bother me about the Jim Garrow story. If he is truly rescuing baby girls, legally or illegally, why would he speak so freely about it to anyone - naming names, claiming he was nominated for a Nobel, yadda, yadda? As almost anyone knows, elite Chinese communists will not be embarrassed. Furthermore, a truly heroic person is humble and seeks no recognition, especially if it would endanger others. Seems to me the rescues and Nobel nomination are complete bunk. Trafficking, maybe. I look forward to further reports.

Anonymous said...

http://atlah.org/atlahworldwide/?p=5977

1:18 Manning talks about Jim Garrow
1:37 Interview begins
------------------------------------

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/chinaconversation

Original Air Date: May 19, 2009
China Conversation
Lonnie Hodge and Des Walsh discuss the work of the Pink Pagoda organization and its mission to assist in the prevention of infanticide in China.
-------------------------------------
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/news-free-kooskia-id/2010/06/05/news-free-kooskia-idaho-and-ava-indiana-show

Show Name:
News Free Kooskia Idaho and Ava Indiana show

Date / Length: 05/06/2010 6:00 PM - 2 hrs Length: 2 hrs Description:
h:51873 s:1046979
Please Join Susie from Mkgop and I as we talk to Dr Jim Garrow of the Bethune Institute

Anonymous said...

Jim is surrounded by right wing politicians within North America. His connection to the Christian coalition has certainly assisted in his pagoda efforts. Jim did not openly come out about his program until his "tap was turned off". Mr. Garrow is now networking with others to continue his underground mission. India is a new target.

People need to understand that the Christian coalition is responsible for many of the right wing politicians making way into office. It's also behind the various laws that have been passed to prevent family planning funds to be given to China. The Christian coalition set it's roots in Canada with the aid of Garrow and other well known politicians. Obama started allowing money to be given for family planning efforts and now Harper has taken it away. Canada has also recently witnessed the first safe-haven. It's quite clear that the Canadian conservative government has an agenda.
We need to understand that Garrow and the Christian Coalition are a reflection of why we see governments ignore or justify these crimes. They follow the laws of their God and not our country.
One of the main objectives of the Christian coalition is to defeat the UNCRC. This is exactly what we are witnessing now. The Hague convention has allowed this Pink Pagoda scenario to happen.
This entire situation was made possible by the right wing conservative/republican party.
Let's not be naive and dismiss him as "nutty" when this whole scenario was a planned approach back in the mid 90's.
The pro-life agenda doesn't care about offending China. That's the whole purpose.

Anonymous said...

http://www.newcomm.org/NWCHD/NorthwestUpdates/NorthwestUpdate-1996/NU-3-15-1996.pdf

18. CHRISTIAN COALITION IN BRITISH COLUMBIA; The Christian Coalition has established roots in
British Columbia, Canada and mayplayarole in elections possibly to be called for April or May. Bill Vander Zalm,
a former British Columbia premier and one ofthe more than 20 directors ofthe fledgling B.C. chapter, announced
that the group plans to distribute "voter guides" in churches around the province in any upcoming election.
Vander Zalm notes that the group is already organized in the Okanagan, the Fraser Valley and the Lower
Mainland. Vander Zalm has associated in the past with the right-wing Reform Party and the Family Coalition
Party of B.C.
The B.C. chapterformed after several dozen Canadians attended the fall 1995 Christian Coalition convention
in the U.S. Don Spratt, a member of Operation Rescue, leads the B.C. chapter. Other advisors to the group
include Ted and Link Byfield of the right-wing Alberta Report and B.C. Report magazines, Alex Parachin, head
of the Canadian branch of Pat Robertson's Christian Broadcasting Network and Jason Kenny, head of the
Canadian Taxpayers Association. Jim Garrow, the Ontario-based leader ofthe Christian Coalition of Canada
told reporters that the group will seek allies in organizations such as the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada,
REAL Women and the Canadian branch of James Dobson's Focus on the Family.

*Jason "Kenny" referred to above is actually Jason Kenney-current Canadian Immgration minister.

Anonymous said...

Garrow would be a lot more credible if the story quoted and a general google search didn't turn up so many massive holes in his record. Unregistered flight schools, stripped of his teaching license, pursued by the Mennonite Brethren, and basically driven out of a school in the US. Sure, he speaks well and is knowledgeable about adoption issues in China; wouldn't you do some background work if you were going to run a scam?

Someone should find someone willing to talk at Yew Chung International Schools in HK for an account of his activities in China.

Anonymous said...

Some Christians have a lack of respect for secular law. The first commandment is after all:

"Thou shalt have no other gods before me." -God(supposedly)

Thank you (all of you) for your research.

Anonymous said...

Brian said: "China has demonstrated repeatedly that the driving force in their program is the funding from Western families"

This may be true - but I just don't get it. Is it really all about the kickbacks? It's surely not about the $$ coming into China's economy (as I've heard some say). I mean, let's say China adopts out 10000 kids in a year (nowadays it's nowhere near that) with an orphanage fee of $5000 each. That's still just $50 million, which, if I've done the math correctly, is 1/1000 of 1% of China's $5 trillion GDP.

Do the kickbacks go all the way up the line? It just seems like chump change for an issue that seems like it's making China lose major face with the rest of the world.

Research-China.Org said...

You are right that the issue isn't money in a strict sense. But the Chinese government intentionally underfunds the Social Welfare program in order to create financial incentives to perpetuate the program. Orphans simply aren't a priority, especially when they can have their program completely funded by foreigners. If push came to shove, there is little question that the Chinese could take the profits from their Beanie Babies and completely fund the orphan program, but they made the decision long ago to let foreigners do it.

Brian

Jessica Pegis said...

About the Nobel Prize stuff. Garrow says on Facebook that "The Bethune Institute and its Pink Pagoda program, saving baby girls from infanticide in the Peoples Republic of China, got the silver medal." ????

He also wrote to President Obama, the winner, directing him to "seize the world stage in his acceptance speech for the Nobel Peace Prize" by calling on President Hu to "stop the war against China’s daughters and end the one child policy today."

Doing so, said Garrow, "could be a magnificent answer to the many questions of the prematurity of this award" for Obama.

Priceless. I think I'll have to blog about this.

Research-China.Org said...

Admittedly, Garrow's claim to being second place is laughable. Literally anyone can make that boast, as it is impossible to prove. Maybe I should announce my nomination. Wow, what a resume builder!!!

Brian

Anonymous said...

There is not one iota of proof that Garrow is doing what he says he is doing, and a record a mile long showing he is not credible.

Anonymous said...

I was one of the students involved in the disciplinary hearing when Jim Garrow was suspended and fined - I have Googled him off and on since then and the first time I read about his "Pink Pagoda" program I assumed it was a scam. I can't say much about his actions since he disappeared from our classroom in 1999 as the only time I have seen him since was when we were at the the Ontario College of Teachers. I can however say that he gave everyone I know that met him the impression that he was crazy. At that time he was making claims about being connected in Hollywood and about being an extra or having bit parts in several movies. He also made unsubstantiated claims about purchasing kit planes for previous schools that he worked at and allowing them to sell them as a fund raiser after building them.

Anonymous said...

Hi Anon who was one of the students who complained about Garrow in 1999.

Would you be able to go into more detail about what the nature of the complaints actually were? The report is quite vague and it is hard to tell from it if Garrow was merely being flaky or really quite threatening...

Andrew said...

I can regale you for hours with my involvement with Garrow who was once a tenant in my house outside of Guelph. He is the REAL thing -- a true sociopath con artist. I have just now started to reinvestigate by googling him and finding myself here. I am now concerned that he is more than a danger as between private individuals such as landlords and investors, but is now actually involved in something as serious as child smuggling. His ego and arrogance know no bounds. I sincerely hope that the RCMP and the Government of Ontario investigate and put him out of business and behind bars.

Andrew Brick, MD formerly of Guelph Ontario and currently of Tucson AZ

Anonymous said...

Here is something official on James Edward Garrow of Guelph, which supports Dr. Brick's evaluation. He was censured and fined and his credentials were suspended for abusing his students and abandoning his job as a teacher in Ontario. You can check it yourself at:

http://professionallyspeaking.oct.ca/june_2002/blue13.asp

"Member: James Edward Garrow
Decision: 9-month Suspension, Reprimand and $3,000 Fine
Registration Number: 366779

A panel of the Discipline Committee held a public hearing over six sessions from July 2001 to February 2002 into allegations of professional misconduct against James Edward Garrow of Guelph. Garrow, 52, was certified to teach in 1976 and was employed as a teacher by the Upper Canada District School Board. Garrow represented himself at the hearing.

The allegations of professional misconduct against Garrow included failing to maintain the standards of the profession and abusing students physically, sexually, verbally, psychologically or emotionally.

Students testified at the hearing that Garrow made disparaging or derogatory remarks about them. The panel also heard testimony that Garrow abandoned his employment with the Upper Canada District School Board in early June of 1999 and failed to resume his employment despite letters, telephone calls and faxed communications from the board. The board dismissed Garrow for breaching his professional duties in July 1999.

The panel found that Garrow tried to rationalize abandoning his position, and that he showed a lack of remorse for his actions. His testimony was at times contradictory, inflammatory and irrelevant to the matters at issue, in contrast to the testimony from witnesses.

The panel found Garrow guilty of professional misconduct and ordered his Certificates of Registration and Qualification suspended for nine months. The panel reprimanded Garrow immediately following the hearing and also imposed a fine of $3,000 to be paid to the Minister of Finance within six months of the panel’s decision. The decision of the panel appears on the College’s public register."

Anonymous said...

International Internet Alliance, a Guelph (Ont.) company operated by Jim Garrow, sold franchises for CleanNet, an Internet service that screened Web sites to block access to those with pornography or violence. Now, he can't be found. He had sold 191 franchises, mainly in Ontario. In June, Bell Canada cut IIA's phone lines due to unpaid bills, leaving franchisees with irate local customers. CleanNet blocked 142,000 Internet sites at the source and regularly downloaded updated lists of blocked sites. Curiously, while heavily appealing to Christians concerned about easy access to pornography and violence on the Internet, Garrow also offered an unfiltered service called The Rocket. Prices for the franchises in Ontario ranged from $25,000 for a local area (Christian organizations were allowed to purchase a franchise for $10,000 up front) to $100,000 for a regional area. Unconfirmed reports say Garrow sold a franchise to an individual for the entire province of B.C. for $1 million. Attempts by various franchisees to recoup their investments have proved useless because Garrow has not surfaced to face his investors. Franchises also were offered in Colombia, Saudi Arabia and Great Britain. Since 1995, Garrow has been involved in attempts to launch the National Parents Coalition of Canada, was an organizer for the Reform Party of Canada, and attempted to launch a Canadian version of the Christian Coalition.--CHRISTIANWEEK