Motion to Reconsider Fraud Charges Against Former Canadian Senator Filed

Lucas Gilmore, “Big 4″ observer
February 01, 2011 /

OTTAWA, Canada – Ernst & Young’s audit for the Senate issued December 2010 has proven that Sen. Raymond Lavigne was not the only senator who found deficiencies in the rules of the upper chamber.

This was the allegation of the Canadian senator’s lawyers who called on the court to reopen the fraud case that has been wrapped up in 2009.

Lavigne was convicted on December last year guilty of the $5,000 fraud charges hurled against him in 2007 for obstruction of justice and breach of trust.

He was charged with misusing sums from the taxpayers’ money for his personal gains that included travel expenses and services of his staff rendered on his personal property that went hidden.

Upon filing of the fraud charges, Lavigne was ousted from the upper chamber. Since then, he was still receiving his salary worth $132,300 and another $153,120 in travel perks coming from the office budget.

The court proceedings culminated in 2009, but the judge has not been able to give his final verdict due to constant delays. February 22 is slated for the final verdict.

Now, Canadian news reference QMI Agency reported that lawyers of Lavigne are on the process of filing for a motion to reconsider the fraud charges against their client, saying the audit report turned out that Lavigne was not the only one who believed the rules in the upper chamber were dubious.

One of Lavigne’s legal counsels, Dominique St-Laurent was quoted as saying “it makes no sense” to indict Lavigne for fraud charges when he could not “ function in an environment where the rules aren’t clear.”

Ernst & Young’s audit revealed inadequacies in the upper chamber’s policies, some of them allegedly non-existent. The audit firm also reported improper documentation of details of the expenses incurred by the senators.

The audit, however, found no criminal misconduct.


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