October 23rd, 2020

Theft, fraud case may be heading to trial


By Shurtz, Delon on August 20, 2020.

Delon Shurtz

lethbridge herald

dshurtz@lethbridgeherald.com

A half-a-million-dollar theft and fraud case may finally go to trial, more than four years after a 49-year-old man was charged with stealing nearly $500,000 from a Taber business.

Scott Allen Blanchard was charged in 2016 with theft and fraud over $5,000, and Tuesday during a brief hearing in Lethbridge provincial court the matter was adjourned to Sept. 1, ostensibly to set a trial date.

It will be the third time the case has been set for trial. On Oct. 11, 2016 Blanchard elected to be tried by a Court of Queen’s Bench judge and jury with a preliminary hearing. The preliminary hearing was later waived but a trial was set for November 2018. Several months before the trial, court was told additional witnesses had been identified, and the trial was adjourned until October 2019 in front of a judge alone. That trial was also later cancelled.

Blanchard was arrested and charged in August 2016 following an investigation that began two years earlier after police received a complaint of theft and possible fraud.

The investigation found that close to $500,000 had been misappropriated from the Oilmen’s Club in Taber during the time Blanchard was manager.

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