NEWS

Senate scandal: Benjamin Perrin's emails not deleted

12/01/2013 09:11 EST | Updated 01/31/2014 05:59 EST
Emails belonging to Benjamin Perrin, the former counsel for the Prime Minister’s Office who is named in RCMP documents released related to the deal between Nigel Wright and Senator Mike Duffy, were not in fact deleted, according to the Privy Council Office.

Court documents released last month show Prime Minister Stephen Harper's former chief of staff, Nigel Wright, is being investigated for bribery, fraud and breach of trust along with Senator Mike Duffy, in an RCMP probe that has expanded to include the Prime Minister's Office.

In a statement released Sunday evening, the PCO says it was wrong when it told the RCMP and the PMP that Perrin’s emails had been deleted when he left his position in March.

In fact, Perrin’s account had been frozen “due to unrelated litigation.”

The PCO says it will turn the email records over to the RCMP immediately.

'Monstrous fraud'

In the court documents, police say there are reasonable grounds to believe Wright offered money or favour to Duffy contrary to the Criminal Code, and allege Duffy agreed to accept the offer of money.

Police also allege Wright and Duffy "have committed bribery, frauds on the government, and breach of trust."

The documents include email excerpts that suggest numerous senior officials in the PMO were involved in the negotiations, as well as in writing the report by the Senate committee that handled the audit process.

They also allege that Duffy himself was the instigator behind what he described in the Senate last month as a "monstrous fraud."

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