Crown continues to make its case against Sen. Mike Duffy at Ottawa trial

OTTAWA — The trial of Mike Duffy is hearing about trips the Senator took to various events across the country.

Justice Charles Vaillancourt has heard it cost $10,652 for Duffy to travel to Vancouver Island for a charity event organized by local Conservatives.

And court was also told Wednesday about another charity event organized by Conservatives in the Yukon in the summer of 2009 where the costs for Duffy and his wife came to $8,567.

The Crown is using the events as it lays out its case that Duffy defrauded taxpayers when he travelled on allegedly personal and partisan business.

The focus is on whether Duffy was on legitimate Senate business, or simply attending party or family affairs with some meetings as a convenient cover.

Duffy has pleaded not guilty to 31 charges of fraud, breach of trust and bribery in connection with his Senate travel, living and office expenses.

Vaillancourt told court Wednesday that extra weeks have been reserved for the trial from Aug. 11 to Aug. 28, and then again, if necessary, from Nov. 18 to Dec. 18.

This means that witnesses including senior Conservative senators and the prime minister’s former chief of staff Nigel Wright could be testifying just as the party leaders prepare to hit the campaign trail for the October federal election.

 

The Canadian Press