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Red Deer man charged with theft of over $100,000 from Christian motorcycle group

Investigation started after non-profit group reported irregularites

Red Deer RCMP have charged a former office administrator with stealing over $100,000 from his non-profit employer, a motorcycle association.

RCMP said Friday that a local man was charged after a detailed investigation led by the Red Deer RCMP Fraud Unit’s financial crimes investigator and supported by FINTRAC, Canada’s national financial intelligence unit.

A fraud investigation began in 2016 after the suspect’s former employer, the Christian Motorcycle Association, reported irregularities in their banking activity. With support from FINTRAC, the Red Deer RCMP financial crimes investigator was able to determine a pattern of theft over a period of almost two years that involved fraudulent e-transfers, forged cheques and illicit use of the club credit card.

The accused worked as an office administrator for the association from September 2013 to June 2015.

Kenneth Van Someren, 53, is charged with fraud over $5,000; uttering forged documents; trafficking in property obtained by crime; and possession of stolen property over $5,000. He has been remanded and is scheduled make his first court appearance in Red Deer on Friday.

“Fraud investigations such as this one require detail-oriented investigation to trace the movement of numerous sums of money from various sources over the course of almost two years,” said Const. William Lewadniak, Red Deer RCMP financial crimes investigator.

“Red Deer RCMP was fortunate to be able to work closely with FINTRAC on this investigation and benefit from their shared financial intelligence.”

FINTRAC (Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada) is Canada’s financial intelligence unit. Its mandate is to facilitate the detection, prevention and deterrence of money laundering and the financing of terrorist activities, while ensuring the protection of personal information under its control.

RCMP said that the fraud investigation and its subsequent charges are in keeping with the Red Deer RCMP Annual Policing Plan goal to increase the number of criminal investigations that are referred to the Fraud Unit’s financial crimes investigator.

In the fourth quarter of the APP, which runs from April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017, the Fraud Unit has surpassed their goals for the year, investigating numerous high-level frauds and seizing approximately $1.5M in houses, vehicles, furniture and cash as proceeds of crime under the Civil Forfeiture Act.