Kamloops man again admits to employment insurance fraud

Donald Edward Connolly pleaded guilty to six counts of making a false claim. In 2016, he pleaded guilty to the same offence. On Monday, Connolly was spared jail and fined $12,000

A Kamloops man will avoid jail after admitting on Monday that he bilked taxpayers out of more than $7,000 in an employment-insurance racket — the second time he has been convicted for such a scam.

Donald Edward Connolly pleaded guilty to six counts of making a false claim under the Employment Insurance Act. He was fined $12,000 and placed on a four-month conditional sentence order, meaning he will live under strict conditions in the community.

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Court heard he made 12 false claims between May 2015 and July 2016 and received $7,211.

Connolly, 47, claimed he was out of work to collect employment insurance. In fact, he was working at the time for a Kamloops concrete company.

“He gained access to EI benefits he would not have been entitled to,” federal Crown prosecutor Chris Tait said.

In August 2016, Connolly pleaded guilty to seven counts of the same offence. In that instance, he bilked the government out of $9,300 and was ordered to pay $7,000 in fines within a year. Tait said the amount is still outstanding in full.

Court heard Connolly has also been assessed $29,000 in administrative penalties and his wages are being garnished to make payments.

“Is there anything you can tell me about your thinking in terms of generating these ill-gotten gains?” Kamloops provincial court Judge Stephen Harrison

asked.

“Pretty much greed,” Connolly replied. “It won’t happen again.”

© Kamloops This Week

 

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