Former Chilliwack city councillor and mayoral candidate Sam Waddington has been charged with two counts of breach of trust by a public officer. (Jennifer Feinberg/ Progress file)

Former B.C. city councillor charged with breach of trust over expense claims

Sam Waddington of Chilliwack faces two counts related to 2017 allegations

Two years after accusations first surfaced, former City of Chilliwack councillor and mayoral candidate Sam Waddington has been criminally charged with breach of trust.

According to B.C. Court Services Online, Samuel Josh Waddington faces two counts of breach of trust by public officer, one offence dated May 29, 2017, the second Dec. 5, 2017.

Black Press became aware of the charges before Tuesday’s council meeting after members of city council were informed. Waddington has not yet had a court appearance in the case.

Questions over Waddington’s expenses emerged during the municipal election in which he ran for mayor against former mayor Sharon Gaetz and the winner of that election, Ken Popove.

In September 2018, an independent auditor was hired by city hall with the findings to be referred to the RCMP.

Gaetz and Popove (who was a councillor at the time) recused themselves from a discussion at a special meeting of council to decide to hire the auditor.

“We chose to do so, so that there could be no suggestion it was an attempt to influence the election,” Gaetz said a year ago.

• READ MORE: Waddington expense claims being sent to the RCMP

Both Gaetz and now retired councillor Chuck Stam had filed freedom of information (FOI) requests for details about out-of-town conferences and meetings for which Waddington filed expense claims.

Some of the people Waddington said he met with came forward to say the meetings never happened.

At that time, he called the “tens of thousands” of dollars of taxpayer money spent to investigate his $1,500 in expenses a political move.

“I don’t believe this effort is administrative, I believe it is political,” Waddington said. “And it’s going to be a very expensive endeavour for the city, so it will be up to the public to decide if this was the right course of action to take.”

The charges Waddington, 30, face come under section 122 of the criminal code, which states: “Every official who, in connection with the duties of his office, commits fraud or a breach of trust is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years, whether or not the fraud or breach of trust would be an offence if it were committed in relation to a private person.”

See www.theprogress.com for more details as they become available.


@PeeJayAitch
paul.henderson@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Nanwakolas Council makes donation to North Island College to support First Nation students

The money was raised at the 2019 Nanwakolas golf tournament.

LETTER: Texas man deserved to be charged for ‘rescuing’ baby seal

‘I am hopeful that there is still time to lay charges! In this instance I totally think it’s warranted’

Poetry contest started for Vancouver Island poets

“We’re such a unique group,” says founder on why she wanted to start the collective

B.C. would not send students back to school if there was ‘overwhelming risk’: Horgan

Plan has left many parents across the province worried about their children’s safety

Walmart to make face masks mandatory for customers across Canada

Requirement goes into effect on Wednesday, Aug. 12 across Canada

Masks to be mandatory on BC Transit, TransLink starting Aug. 24

Both BC Transit and TransLink made the announcement in separate press releases on Thursday

Penticton homes evacuated due to wildfire northwest of city

Emergency vehicles are at the scene near Sage Mesa, evacuation centre set up in Penticton

British Columbians worried as end of COVID-19 rental supplement looms

Single mom struggles as supplement was her saving grace

B.C. fish harvesters receive long-awaited details on pandemic benefits

Applications to the $470-million federal assistance programs will open Aug. 24

Arson suspected in several wildfires lit near Kootenay town

RCMP making progress in arson investigation of Marsh Creek fires

Three screening officers at Vancouver airport test positive for COVID-19

The public is not believed to be at risk of exposure

Most Read