APTN National News
A former girlfriend of Sen. Patrick Brazeau has told RCMP officers investigating him for fraud that Brazeau never lived in Maniwaki, Que. and sometimes when they visited his father there they stayed in a hotel.
The details of the woman’s statement to RCMP investigators are found in a court document filed in Ottawa Tuesday as part of the Mounties on-going probe into alleged Senate expense fraud.
Brazeau filed nearly $45,000 in living expense reimbursements between 2011 and 2013 saying his primary residence was his father’s home in Maniwaki.
Senators are allowed to file for travel and living expenses if their primary home is more than 100 km away from Parliament Hill.
Brazeau filed for rent he was paying at a Gatineau home and travel back and forth from Maniwaki.
However, the ex-girlfriend, who lived with Brazeau for about 20 months, said he never lived in Maniwaki.
“During the 20 months that she lived with Brazeau, he has never lived in Maniwaki,” said Cpl. Greg Horton in an affidavit filed in court seeking access to Brazeau’s bank account records between March 2011 and July 2013.
In fact, the woman couldn’t recall the address of the home in Maniwaki, but gave a description of it.
The home is owned by Brazeau’s father Marcel Brazeau and he lives alone according to the RCMP.
“On some occasions when they visited Marcel Brazeau , they have slept overnight. They also slept at a hotel on occasion so they did not disturb Marcel Brazeau in his residence,” said Horton recounting what the woman said in her statement.
The RCMP believe Brazeau committed breach of trust and fraud by filing inappropriate expense claims.
Brazeau first looked into filing expenses March 2011 according to an email between his staff and the Senate.
“In the event that Senator Brazeau rents an apartment in Ottawa, will his rent be reimbursed only for the months that the Senate sits?” asked a member of this staff to Nicole Proulx of Senate finance in the Mar. 8 email.
Proulx wrote back with a link directing them to the policy and if Brazeau had any questions to call her.
According to the RCMP, this is what Brazeau took as a green light to file expenses.
“I do not interpret Ms. Proulx’s response an authorization for Senator Brazeau to commence with claiming an (National Capital Region) housing allowance, but rather direction on where (Brazeau) can read the policy pertaining to such matters,” said Horton.
Police and forensic accountants have been examining expense claims, residency declarations, mobile telephone statements, corporate credit card statements, attendance records and electronic calendar entries.