06/09/2015 11:14 EDT | Updated 06/09/2016 01:12 EDT

Mike Duffy's former executive assistant tells of office procedures

OTTAWA - Mike Duffy's former executive assistant is testifying again today at the trial of the embattled senator.Melanie Mercer, a former political staffer, worked for Duffy following his 2009 Senate appointment until he was suspended from the upper chamber in 2013.Mercer has testified on a practice in Duffy's office, which involved having the senator sign blank travel claims.She says two aides from other senator's offices suggested this strategy as they showed her the ropes.Mercer told court she thought the procedure was very practical and she didn't think anything of it at the time.Duffy has pleaded not guilty to 31 charges of fraud, bribery and breach of trust.

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