Pamela Wallin's expense claims sought from 3 more organizations

The RCMP have received more records regarding the expense claims of suspended senator Pamela Wallin, newly released documents show.

Bell, BMO Nesbitt Burns and University of Guelph turn over records

The RCMP have received more records regarding the expense claims of suspended senator Pamela Wallin, newly released documents show. (Patrick Doyle/Canadian Press)

The RCMP have received more records regarding the expense claims of suspended senator Pamela Wallin, newly released documents show.

The Mounties say they have zeroed in on 150 expense claims Wallin made to the Senate that needed more investigation. Earlier this month, court records showed the RCMP received records from Porter Airlines and Gluskin Sheff and Associates, two companies on whose boards Wallin sat.

The investigator said he believes Wallin filed her expense claims twice, once with the Senate and once with those companies, and that he believes she committed fraud and breach of trust.

The expense claims were filed between Jan. 15, 2009, shortly after Wallin was named to the Senate, and Sept. 25, 2012.

The new documents show the RCMP are also looking into Wallin's expense claims with regard to meetings with the University of Guelph, BMO Nesbitt Burns and CTV, and cover 21 of the 150 expense claims being probed by the RCMP.

Those claims are worth $25,567.31, according to the RCMP's forensic accountant.

"Senator Wallin, when questioned during an external audit, misrepresented the nature of these trips to Toronto," Cpl. Rudy Exantus wrote in an affidavit filed as part of an Information to Obtain, also known as a production order or ITO.

"I believe that Senator Wallin breached the standard of responsibility and conduct demanded of her and by the nature of her office. I believe that Senator Wallin's conduct represent[s] a serious and marked departure from the standards expected of a Canadian senator." 

Wallin said her office may have made errors in some of the filings and paid back $154,191.29, but later said she wished she hadn't repaid the money because people were using it against her.

No advantage

In an email earlier this month, Wallin's lawyer told CBC News that there was no possible advantage for Wallin in claiming the board expenses.

"It was the policy of those companies on whose board Senator Wallin sat to reimburse her for expenses for travelling to Ottawa, to Toronto back to Ottawa, to attend board meetings or other corporate events," Terrence O'Sullivan said.

"Through administrative errors, some of those trips were charged to the Senate rather than to those companies... This was fully explained nearly two years ago, when after the mistake was discovered the money was repaid to the Senate by Senator Wallin."

Wallin sat on the board of directors for CTV globemedia Inc. from January 2009 to May 2011. The company is now known as Bell Media. A lawyer for the company declined to have any representatives interviewed by the RCMP.

She also served as chancellor of the University of Guelph from January 2009 to March, 2011.

Multiple versions of calendars

Wallin also sat on BMO's retirement advisory council from 2006 until November 2012, when it was disbanded, Exantus relates in the court documents, although it wasn't listed on her Senate disclosure. The council was not a decision-making body, according to a BMO executive interviewed by the RCMP.

The records suggest Wallin said she took a number of trips to meet with people, marked on her calendar, but the meetings may not have occurred as some couldn't recall meeting with the senator. Some noted they were not in even in the same city on the dates Wallin provided.

In one case, Wallin flew from Saskatoon to Toronto on July 9, 2013, and back on July 13, which she claimed as Senate business.

One of the calendars her office provided to investigators — there were several versions, both electronic and paper — noted a cancelled speech to an arts club. But the club's general manager was unaware of any scheduled event featuring Wallin.

The speech date was written on the paper copy of the calendar, Exantus noted.

The date of the trip to Toronto coincided with the date of a BMO meeting that was in Wallin's calendar and BMO records show Wallin attended.

In a July 2013 letter, O'Sullivan said Wallin and her assistant had at first provided all her appointments, then provided calendars with Senate business alone to try to speed up the investigation. There were also corrections made based on which events she had attended, he said. 

Invoice irregularities

Wallin also said she attended a cancer awareness event at a friend's home, although the friend told the RCMP she couldn't recall hosting such an event on that date.

The RCMP noted Wallin's office provided an article about being a cancer survivor attached to that expense claim. 

"I saw no nexus between this article and the July 12, 2012, cancer awareness fundraiser, other than the topic," Exantus wrote.

In another case, Wallin's electronic calendar was updated in May 2013 to show a Toronto meeting with Dan Sullivan, then Canada's consul general to New York City in April 2009.

Sullivan told the RCMP that he had no record of meeting with Wallin then, and that he believes he was in New York on the April 19, 2009, the date Wallin's calendar showed for the meeting.

Wallin also expensed to the Senate a trip to Toronto to do an election night broadcast as a Conservative pundit, a partisan act Exantus says counts as a personal activity.

The Senate had probed Wallin's expense claims in 2012 after staff noted "irregularities" with her travel pattern, which seemed to focus on Toronto rather than her home province of Saskatchewan, according to court records.

Senate staff noted Wallin had filed one invoice from a car rental service made on Senate letterhead, as well as some invoices dated before the actual date of service. There were further inconsistencies with the rates charged on the car rental invoices.

The staff also noted "the communication tone of Senator Wallin when addressing Senate finance staff," which in one staffer's opinion "would lead a new employee to think that it was OK to bend the rules to suit the senator's demands," Exantus summarized in his affidavit.


  • This story has been edited from an earlier version to correct the amount of money Pamela Wallin has repaid the Senate. The RCMP say she repaid $39,652.12 by June 26, 2013, and has made an additional payment of $114,539.17 for a total of $154,191.29.
    Mar 31, 2015 6:33 PM ET