Flushing beauty school operator busted for stealing thousands from students in license scam

The operator of a Flushing beauty school allegedly offered prospective nail salon workers and stylists a shortcut in securing state licenses, and it cost them dearly, prosecutors announced.

Yuk Fung Lam Chan, 54, of 58th Avenue in Flushing, who operates the New Century Beauty Center located at 135-27 40th Rd., is accused of duping aspiring salon workers out of thousands of dollars by selling them fake state license applications over a three-year period.


Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown said the charges filed against Chan were the result of a lengthy investigation that his office conducted at the request of the owners of the Grace International Beauty School (GIBS), located at 136-31 41st Ave. The owners claimed that hundreds of license applications filed with the New York Department of State indicated that the applicants received their training at GIBS, even though the school had no record that the students were ever enrolled there.

The inquiry revealed that Chan allegedly charged individuals between $1,300 and $2,000 to provide them with completed training certificates as part of their application for state cosmetology licenses. Prosecutors said she used the ID code for GIBS on the applications and signed each of them with the name of the GIBS director, Grace Cheung.

This allowed the applicants to bypass 1,000 hours of training and a physical exam required by the state in order to obtain a cosmetology license.

“By allegedly allowing the would-be students to bypass the stringent requirements needed to work in these salons, [Chan] in her greed potentially put the well-being of salon customers in jeopardy, as one of the requirements was for each student to undergo a physical exam by a doctor to rule out any infectious or communicable diseases,” Brown said in a statement.

Chan was charged on Monday, Jan. 30, with multiple counts including grand larceny, offering a false instrument for filing, scheme to defraud, identity theft and criminal impersonation. She faces up to four years behind bars if convicted; her next court date is Tuesday, Feb. 14.

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