Newspaper article The Canadian Press

RCMP Want "All" of Liberal Senator's Expense Records Back to 2003

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

RCMP Want "All" of Liberal Senator's Expense Records Back to 2003

Article excerpt

RCMP dig deeper into Liberal senator's claims

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OTTAWA - The Mounties intend to widen their probe into inappropriate expense claims filed by Liberal Senator Mac Harb, who they say claimed an "uninhabitable'' home as his primary residence.

In a sworn affidavit filed in an Ontario court, RCMP Cpl. Greg Horton said the force wants to see records dating back to the time Harb was appointed to the upper chamber a decade ago by former prime minister Jean Chretien.

"The period of time for which I am seeking documents and data is for the entire time that he has been in the Senate for which records are available," Horton wrote in a document known as a production order.

He said the Senate has indicated it routinely holds on to records for eight fiscal years, and those reports are readily available. However, the deputy law clerk in the Senate has indicated copies going back even further might be around.

"I believe that an analysis and audit of these records and expenses will provide evidence of the named offense by demonstrating that Harb's primary residence is in Ottawa," Horton wrote.

"They will also provide a record of all inappropriate housing expenses claimed by Harb, and assist in advancing the investigation."

A separate Senate committee investigation, looking at the immediately available records, estimated that Harb inappropriately claimed up to $231,649 between 2005 and 2012 -- a figure the senator disputes.

The Mounties are investigating Harb for breach of trust, and probing back before 2005 could push that figure higher.

None of the allegations have been proven in court.

The Senate's board of internal economy only ordered him to repay $51,482 in living expenses associated with the inappropriate housing claims. He is also fighting the repayment order in court.

The Senate has indicated it will cooperate with the RCMP request for more information. …

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