Our client was jointly charged with their spouse and initially faced three counts of Fraud over $5,000.00. It was alleged that the couple, who were on income assistance, had defrauded the Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction just over $100,000. Importantly a Conditional Sentence Order is not an available sentence for a charge of Fraud over $5,000. After significant negotiation, Crown Counsel agreed to accept a plea to a single count of Theft of $5,000 – abandoning the Fraud Charges. We were further able to convince the Crown to agree to a joint submission whereby our client would receive a 6 month Conditional Sentence Order. Crown sought a stand-alone restitution order for all monies that had been taken. In court, we successfully argued that, for a proportionate sentence, the amount of restitution our client ought to pay should be reduced. The sentencing judge accepted the joint submission and agreed with our argument on restitution, ultimately reducing the amount our client was ordered to pay by 50%.
Outcome: 6-month CSO plus a standalone restitution order, reduced by 50%
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