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More 'customers' of Richmond's rogue landscaper surface

Chris Slawko Hawryluk has apparently been duping residents for decades and was recently ordered by a judge to repay $2,000
Chris Slawko Hawryluk, at the door of one of his most recent 'customers' in Richmond

More so-called 'customers' of Richmond’s rogue landscaper are surfacing after the Richmond News broke the story of his trail of woe.

The News reported last week how several Richmond residents felt they had been duped by Chris “Slawko” Hawryluk, who had turned up at their doors offering landscaping services.

On each occasion, Hawryluk – who used a “Pro Pruners” business card – agreed to carry out a range of work in their gardens, took thousands of dollars from the homeowners and then plied them with ill-health excuses after doing a day or two’s labour.

Hawryluk gave two neighbours in west Richmond a different excuse for not being able to finish the jobs – first up, Brian Flagel was told Hawryluk had a broken foot, before a lady down the street was told it was a bad back.

After the story about the door-to-door landscaper came out last week, another Richmond resident, Kelly Dhillon, contacted the News to say she successfully took Hawryluk to a Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT) a year ago.

Landscaper's ex-wife claims Hawryluk has been pulling the stunt for decades

And his ex-wife and Richmond resident, Lynne Fay, also called in, claiming that her near 70-year-old ex-husband has been pulling this stunt for decades.

She said that "when the going gets too hot," Hawryluk simply moves to another city, including the Island.

Dhillon, meanwhile, had to take Hawryluk to the court in Richmond, despite the CRT ruling in May 2022 that he had to repay her the $2,000 she gave him as a deposit for a $4,000 backyard landscaping job in the summer of 2020.

That case eventually led to an arrest warrant being issued for Hawryluk earlier this year.

He finally appeared in court earlier this month, where a judge ordered him to pay Dhillon back in four instalments, starting next week.

“It’s not really about the money any more, it’s more about him taking responsibility,” Dhillon told the News, adding that she wants as many people as possible to be aware of Hawryluk’s methods.

In the original CRT case, Hawryluk claimed he had offered to give Dhillon a refund but failed to do so because she was “harassing” him.

Dhillon told the CRT that Hawryluk was “largely absent and did almost no work.”

Police say the situation is a civil matter

His most recent “customers,” Flagel and his neighbour went to the RCMP but say they were told it was a civil matter and there wasn’t much they could do.

“Unfortunately he does just enough work to eliminate possible criminal charges,” claimed Flagel.

“It becomes a civil matter because he has failed to deliver on an unwritten contract. Good luck with that in court.”

The News made several attempts last week to contact Hawryluk on the number on his business card and left a message on his voicemail. He has yet to reply.

Richmond RCMP did have some advice for people thinking about using the services of people who show up at your door.

Police say:

Never pay for services in advance

Ask for multiple references

Check the Better Business Bureau

Google name of individual or company or contact email or given phone number to see if others share similar reports

Compare service to actual costs of legitimate or long-standing companies in the same service sector.