May 20th, 2024

Truck buyer receives jail sentence for fraud

By Delon Shurtz on October 30, 2021.


A Lethbridge man has netted himself a stint in jail after attempting to buy pickup trucks with worthless cheques.
Jamie George Hart was sentenced Wednesday in Lethbridge provincial court to 30 days in jail after he pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud under $5,000.
Court was told that on Nov. 4, 2020 Hart responded to an advertisement on Kijiji offering a 2005 Dodge truck for $3,800. Hart met the seller in Coalhurst and paid for the truck with a cheque, which the seller discovered later was worthless.
On June 3 of this year Hart again responded to a Kijiji ad for a Ford F150, which was being sold for $4,000. Hart met the seller and his son and gave them a cheque, then quickly left in the vehicle. The seller’s son noticed, however, that the cheque was not signed, and discovered it had been stolen from a Coalhurst business.
Police later stopped the truck while Hart was driving, and learned he had previously been released on a condition he not be behind the steering wheel of a motor vehicle. He was also a suspended driver at the time.
Hart pleaded guilty to charges of driving while unauthorized and breaching release orders, and was sentenced to 30 days in jail, which will run concurrently with the previous 30-day sentence for fraud.
Lethbridge lawyer Vincent Guinan told court his client, who has been in custody for some time, suffers from “significant” and “debilitating” cognitive deficits, and likely had a diagnosis of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder when he was young, but has since “fallen through the cracks.”
Hart apologized to the court for his actions, and told the judge he will receive treatment as soon as he can.
“My bed’s waiting for me as we speak,” he promised.
Hart faces numerous other charges, including fraud, possession of stolen property over $5,000, and violations under the Traffic Safety Act. He was released, however, on $300 bail and several conditions, and he is scheduled to deal with the charges when he returns to court Nov. 22.

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