Eight charges allege thefts totalling US$2.1 million

Canadian national Michelle Bouchard, 52, appeared in Summary Court on Tuesday facing eight charges of theft, plus one each of transferring criminal property, forgery and obtaining property by deception. 

A news release issued by police last week referred to the complainant as an elderly male resident in Grand Cayman. It described the defendant as a George Town resident here on a student visa, but did not name the school. 

Five of the charges relate to sums of CI currency and three relate to US currency. The allegations include transferring sums of money from the man’s account to hers or ordering bank drafts drawn on his account and applying them to her credit card accounts. The earliest date specified in any of the charges is 31 May, 2010. The transfer of criminal property is alleged to have occurred between 27 September, 2012, and 4 October, 2012, involving US$650,000. 

Bouchard is also accused of obtaining by deception a four-carat diamond ring by falsely representing she had authority to use funds from the man’s account. The ring was valued at US$201,235 and the alleged offence occurred on 13 June, 2012. On or before that date, she is accused of forging a credit card authorisation form purporting to be written and signed by the complainant. 

Defence attorney Ben Tonner told Magistrate Valdis Foldats that he had been provided a bundle of documents, but he had not yet had time yet to read them. He said all of the charges were Category B, meaning that they could be heard in either Summary Court or Grand Court. 

The magistrate asked about the transfer of criminal property. He said it seemed as if it were meant to be a crown election; the charge would be Category A if it is by indictment, he noted. He suggested that Mr. Tonner discuss the matter with crown prosecutor Michael Snape and return to court on 30 July. Bouchard’s bail was extended. 

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