Officers from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) have begun assisting Elections Canada in their investigations of Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and Peterborough MP Dean Del Mastro’s campaign financing during the 2008 election.
According to a court order application filled out by Elections Canada investigator Thomas Ritchie, Del Mastro allegedly overspent on his campaign. It claims employees of Deltro Electric Ltd.— a company owned by Del Mastro’s cousin— were asked to donate $1,000 to the campaign and received cheques for $1,050 as reimbursement.
Though nothing has been proven, the Ottawa Citizen claimed it had obtained copies of cheques payable to some of these donors consistent with the $1,050 reimbursement allegation. Without explanation these cheques mean very little, and as of yet no one from Deltro Electric Ltd. has come forward.
A second allegation made by Elections Canada states that Del Mastro overspent on voter canvassing by $17,000.
At this point these claims are merely allegations and no charges have been laid. Del Mastro maintains that the documents he filed during the election were factive and accurate.
In a statement released to Arthur Newspaper, Del Mastro writes, “I am glad to hear that Elections Canada is attempting to determine whether documents produced by my accuser are doctored or false.”
One of the documents in question is a personal cheque for $21,000, which appears to be written by Del Mastro and paid to the order of Holinshed Research Group on August 18, 2008. If this proves to be a personal contribution it will be ten times the allowed amount of $2,100.
According to Elections Canada documents, Del Mastro claims he spent only $1,575 on the group during the election.
Despite this, Del Mastro maintains his innocence, commenting that his “expenses for that campaign followed the rules. The paperwork was fully disclosed, audited, and certified by Elections Canada.”
Del Mastro characterized the allegations as “false complaints from a disgruntled former supplier who sued me unsuccessfully” in his statement to Arthur.