Former Harper aide Carson charged with illegal lobbying
Bruce Carson walks to a Hy's Steakhouse in Ottawa, May 1, 2008. (Jake Wright / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Published Monday, May 12, 2014 2:58PM EDT
The Mounties have charged Bruce Carson, a former aide to Prime Minister Stephen Harper, with illegal lobbying and influence peddling.
Carson has been charged with three counts of lobbying while prohibited and one count of influence peddling in relation to his work for the Canada School of Energy and Environment, as well as the Energy Policy Institute of Canada.
Police charged Carson on May 7, RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Lucy Shorey said Monday in an email statement.
Carson is scheduled to appear in court on June 18.
Meanwhile, Carson is awaiting trial on a separate charge of influence peddling, which is also referred to as “fraud on the government,” over allegations that he accepted a commission for a third party in connection with a business matter relating to the government.
The RCMP opened an investigation into Carson in March 2011, after receiving a referral from the Prime Minister’s Office. That referral followed a report by Aboriginal People’s Television Network that alleged Carson used his government connections to help his 22-year-old girlfriend.
According to the APTN report, Carson’s girlfriend and former escort, Michele McPherson, worked for H20 Pros and stood to earn commissions from sales of its water systems. Carson is alleged to have lobbied Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada on behalf of the company.
Carson is no stranger to legal trouble. He was disbarred by the Law Society of Upper Canada in the 1980s after he was convicted of defrauding clients, and in 1990 he pleaded guilty to defrauding a car rental company and two banks for sums in excess of $1,000.
Carson served as an adviser to Harper between 2006 and 2008.