P.E.I minister to stand trial in Ontario on fraud and theft-related charges

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P.E.I. Presbyterian minister Harold Alan Stewart has been committed to stand trial in Ontario on 11 theft and fraud-related charges.

The charges against Stewart, 69, include fraud over $5,000, uttering forged documents, theft of power of attorney, and unauthorized use of a credit card.

Stewart was first charged in April 2016 and additional charges were laid in June 2016. At the time, he was a Presbyterian minister with the Kensington-New London pastoral church on P.E.I. However, his appointment there ended in October 2016, which the church said was unrelated to the criminal charges.

A preliminary hearing in Oshawa began in September.

Stewart originally faced 22 charges, but some were dropped or withdrawn during that process.

The hearing wrapped up Thursday, concluding with the judge’s decision that there was enough evidence to go to trial.

The charges related to two cases. One involved a 89-year-old woman who lost $160,000. Stewart and his co-accused are charged with befriending her and using her credit card without her knowledge.

The other case involves a victim police refer to as “a vulnerable person” who lost more than $325,000.

He will be back in court in Oshawa Jan. 12 to be indicted on the charges and to set a date for pretrial in Superior Court.

Read this story over at CBC News.

This story was summarized by Canadian Fraud News Inc.