RCMP charge Sen. Mike Duffy with fraud, breach of trust and bribery

The RCMP laid 31 charges of fraud, breach of trust and bribery against suspended Sen. Mike Duffy on Thursday.

OTTAWA — The RCMP laid 31 charges of fraud, breach of trust and bribery against suspended Sen. Mike Duffy on Thursday.

The charges involve Duffy’s claims for living expenses, claims for travel expenses unconnected with Senate business and fraudulent contracts, said RCMP Assistant Commissioner Gilles Michaud.

They also cover the $90,000 Duffy allegedly received from Nigel Wright, the prime minister’s former chief of staff.

A spokesman for Prime Minister Stephen Harper called the behaviour described in the RCMP charges “disgraceful.”

“We have assisted the RCMP throughout their investigation, and congratulate them on the progress they have made,” Jason Macdonald said in a statement.

“Those who break the rules must suffer the consequences. The conduct described in the numerous charges against Mr. Duffy is disgraceful.”

“As this is now a criminal matter that is before the courts, we have nothing further to add.”

The opposition, meanwhile, blamed the charges on Harper, who appointed Duffy to the Senate.

“These charges and the scandal stem from the poor judgment of the prime minister,” said New Democrat MP Nycole Turmel. “The buck stops with Stephen Harper.

Liberal MP Marc Garneau echoed that.

“These charges are extremely serious,” Garneau said. “Mike Duffy is a legislator in Canada’s Parliament and the prime minister of this country is the one who put him there.”

“Throughout this entire PMO ethics scandal, the prime minister has tried to evade responsibility.”

Michaud said the charges cover more than $200,000 in phoney expenses.

They include money Duffy claimed for living expenses in what he said was a secondary residence in Ottawa, as well as expenses he charged for travel on personal or political business.

The bribery charge covers the $90,000 payment from Wright.

“The investigation into Sen. Mike Duffy has been completed,” Michaud said at a news conference.

“The case was initiated as an investigation into expense claims relating to his declared primary residence in Prince Edward Island, and secondary residence in Ottawa.”

Michaud said the investigation then widened into four different directions.

The first involved expense claims relating to Duffy’s secondary residence in Ottawa, while the second covered the filing of Senate expense claims for travel for personal and partisan reasons, unrelated to Senate business.

A third avenue covered the awards of consulting contracts over a four-year period and the use of part of those funds for personal gain or for expenses that circumvent Senate oversight.

The last involved the $90,000 Duffy got from Wright to repay his residency expense claims.

Duffy’s first court appearance is set for Sept. 16.

The charges could result in a prison sentence. The bribery count carries a maximum sentence of 14 years.

Just Posted

Red Deer church donates to Safe Harbour

It was all about helping those in need at Safe Harbour in… Continue reading

Former firefighter with PTSD sues Syncrude over suspended benefits, dismissal

CALGARY — A lawsuit filed by a former firefighter and paramedic against… Continue reading

Call for tighter bail rules after Saudi sex-crime suspect vanishes

HALIFAX — Mohammed Zuraibi Alzoabi may have hoped to quietly disappear from… Continue reading

Democrats aren’t buying Trump’s shutdown-ending ‘compromise’

WASHINGTON — In a bid to break the shutdown stalemate, President Donald… Continue reading

Updated: Red Deer welcomes 2019 Canada Winter Games Team Alberta

About 250 Alberta athletes are participating in the Games

Students seen mocking Native Americans could face expulsion

One 11-minute video of the confrontation shows the Haka dance and students loudly chanting

Curtain rising Sunday night on total lunar eclipse

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — The celestial curtain will be rising soon on… Continue reading

At 30-day mark, shutdown logjam remains over border funding

WASHINGTON — Thirty days into the partial government shutdown, Democrats and Republicans… Continue reading

Holocaust victims buried after remains found in UK museum

LONDON — The remains of six unidentified Holocaust victims were buried in… Continue reading

Giuliani: ‘So what’ if Trump and Cohen discussed testimony

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani left open Sunday the… Continue reading

Photos: Rocks fly at 37th Annual Oilmen’s Bonspiel

Twenty-nine teams gathered at the Pidherney Curling Centre in Red Deer for… Continue reading

Death toll reaches 79 in Mexico fuel pipeline fire horror

TLAHUELILPAN, Mexico — People in the town where a gasoline explosion killed… Continue reading

With Trump out, Davos chief eyes fixing world architecture

DAVOS, Switzerland — The founder of the World Economic Forum says U.S.… Continue reading

Mexican pipeline explosion kills 71, leaves nightmare of ash

TLAHUELILPAN, Mexico — Gerardo Perez returned Saturday to the scorched field in… Continue reading

Most Read