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A former accountant facing numerous fraud charges

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Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Alberta say the 49-year-old was indicted on January 17.


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A former accountant from Alberta faces six counts of fraud over $5,000 and one count of falsifying books and documents with fraudulent intent.

These criminal charges come as Paul Sturt was the subject of a disciplinary hearing for alleged unprofessional conduct.

According to the chiefs The 49-year-old allegedly defrauded a Spruce Grove construction company, Thompson Brothers, which is an arm of Thompson Construction Group.

The charges, which have not been proven in court, relate to offenses that allegedly occurred between February 2010 and June 2017.

Christina Zoernig, strategist with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), said that Mr. Sturt was indicted on January 17 and that a press release will be issued about him shortly.

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Court documents show that Thompson Brothers filed a complaint against him to federal police in spring 2019.

Brian Beresh, the defendant's lawyer, says his client denies any wrongdoing in that case. We believe the accusations are unfounded and will not be proven in court.

The maximum penalties for fraud over $5,000 and falsification of documents are 14 years and 5 years, respectively.

The professional organization of Chartered Professional Accountants of Alberta, the CPA, also reviewed Mr. Sturt's actions during the same period.

Its complaints investigation committee accused Mr Sturt of failing to carry out his duties with integrity and diligence while working as an executive for four companies and as a director of a fifth company.

The investigative committee alleges he received more than $6.5 million in payments, unauthorized funds and transfers from companies between 2010 and 2017.

Mr Sturt told a disciplinary hearing in November that he was not guilty of unprofessional conduct.

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CPA Alberta, the organization representing Alberta's chartered professional accountants, has commenced a disciplinary hearing into the accused's alleged unprofessional conduct.

During the hearing, his lawyer said his client was a dedicated employee who helped the Thompson Group of Companies and its then-owner, Larry Thompson, save money on taxes.

The disciplinary hearing is expected to continue for a week in February and four days in May.

Chris Mendez, director of corporate services for Thompson Construction Group, declined to comment on the hearing and the recent criminal charges.

Court documents show the defendant also had legal disputes with another group of construction companies over the past year, with Sturt and Anport Financial Inc. filing a compensation claim against Kichton Contracting and other companies

The companies filed a counterclaim that same month, for $560,000.

With information from Madeleine Cummings

By admin

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