KAMLOOPS - First came love, then came marriage, then came the lawsuit by a Kamloops lawyer who says his Vietnamese bride ditched him after getting a Canadian visa.
Rod McLeod has filed a notice of claim in B.C. Supreme Court, seeking money from Nguyen Xuan Bach Phung.
The two met on a social-networking site in July 2009, court documents say.
The next month, McLeod travelled to Vietnam to meet Nguyen.
They married three months later in a ceremony in Vietnam, after which McLeod sponsored Nguyen and her two children for immigration to Canada.
Throughout the relationship, before his wife was granted a visa, McLeod said he transferred money to Vietnam for Nguyen to invest, as well as cash for living expenses.
McLeod said Nguyen promised him she was not using the marriage as a means to gain residency in Canada.
The immigration process took two years, but Nguyen and her children were granted visas in November 2011, court documents say.
They arrived in Vancouver on Dec. 29, 2011.
Court documents say Nguyen “began to limit communications” with McLeod immediately after arriving in Canada, communicating only through text messages, even though they were residing in the same house in Kamloops.
McLeod claims Nguyen would leave the room as soon as he entered and alleges she refused to let him eat with her or her children.
She left McLeod on Jan. 5, 2012, seven days after arriving in Canada.
According to court documents, however, McLeod continued to pay Nguyen’s living expenses until the following summer, when her daughter returned to Vietnam and her adult son became employed.
The couple was divorced in September 2013.
McLeod claims Nguyen was acting recklessly and fraudulently in her relationship with him.
He also claims Nguyen lied in their separation agreement, failing to disclose “significant monies and properties” she owns in Vietnam, which were purchased with McLeod’s money before she moved to Canada.
No dollar amount is set out in McLeod’s notice of claim, but he is seeking general damages, special damages and an order that Nguyen disclose all her assets to McLeod.
Nguyen is believed to be living in Surrey.
She has not yet been served with court documents, but will have three weeks to respond once that is done.
None of the allegations in the notice of claim have been proven in court.