Former Town of Port aux Basques employee acquitted of theft and fraud charges

Published on April 17, 2017

Paula Harvey leaves Newfoundland Supreme Court in Corner Brook on Monday.

©Diane Crocker/The Western Star

Paula G. Harvey walked out of Newfoundland Supreme Court in Corner Brook with a smile on her face Monday morning.

The former Town of Port aux Basques employee was acquitted of four charges brought against her in relation to alleged fraudulent activity in 2013.

Harvey, 32, was charged in February 2014 after the town brought the matter to the attention of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

She had originally been charged with five counts of theft over $5,000, five counts of fraud over $5,000 and seven counts of falsifying a document or book.

Those charges had been reduced to four — theft over $5,000, theft and two counts of falsifying documents or books.

Information before the court alleged that between Sept. 30 and Oct. 28, 2013 Harvey stole more than $5,000 from the town and defrauded the town of approximately $92,000. During the same period it was alleged she defrauded the town by altering a bank deposit book. On Nov. 15, 2013 it was alleged, she altered a permit issued by the town.

Her trial on those charges had been set to begin on Monday, but Crown prosecutor Susan Gallant informed the court that she would call no evidence.

Harvey’s lawyer, Robby Ash, then asked Justice David Hurley for a directed verdict of acquittal on the charges.

Hurley dismissed the charges and entered the acquittal.

Ash then withdrew a Jordan application he had intended to argue in relation to the length of time it had taken to bring the matter to trial.