Calgary councillor and current incumbent Ward 2 candidate Joe Magliocca has been charged by Alberta RCMP in connection with his expenses at the city of Calgary.
Alberta RCMP confirmed the charges Friday afternoon.
According to RCMP, they received a report from the Calgary Police Service regarding alleged fraud and breach of trust that is believed to have occurred in Calgary. The Alberta RCMP Federal and Serious Organized Crime / Financial Crimes unit undertook a complex investigation.
After consultation with the Alberta Crown Prosecution Service, Magliocca now faces one count each of Breach of Trust and Fraud Under $5,000.
Last month, Joe Magliocca said that the truth would eventually come out regarding his expense situation. He said it would have to wait until after the RCMP investigation.
“It’s in the RCMP’s hands. How can I explain anything on it when it’s in their hands,” he said at the time.
Magliocca has been summoned to appear in Calgary Provincial Court on Oct. 15, 2021.
The incumbent councillor has put his name forward for this year’s election.
Magliocca said that although he had apologized to his colleagues for the expense situation, he still hasn’t submitted the formal written apology that was sanctioned by fellow city council members.
The charges don’t immediately disqualify a candidate from being able to run. Since the Sept. 20 nomination deadline has passed, Magliocca’s name would remain on the ballot.
Kevin J. Johnson, who has been convicted and sentenced recently, will still appear on Calgary’s mayoral ballot.
Greg Dunn, lawyer for Magliocca, issued the following statement.
“The timing of this matter – literally days before the election – reeks of political motivation,” Dunn’s statement read.
“This is a civil matter involving an unintentional mistake of less than $4,000.00 for which my client has already voluntarily repaid. Our client is innocent and will vigorously contest the allegations.”
Mayor Naheed Nenshi also issued a statement Friday afternoon.
“People need to have faith and trust in their elected officials. Councillor Magliocca’s actions also caused the city to do an investigation of all other councilors’ expenses that identified no other wrongdoing. Nonetheless, we tightened up our procedures and created a new expense policy and process to close any loopholes,” the statement read.
“However, this points to the need for stronger sanctioning authority for city councils. The Province of Alberta refused to take action on this matter and now it’s before the courts, in the midst of an election. We should have been able to take stronger action sooner.”
Calgarians go to the polls Oct. 18.