Cou­ple pleads guilty to fraud

Stanstead Journal - - NEWS - Ber­trand Gos­selin Sher­brooke Court­house

Sur­pris­ingly enough, last week, Ray­mond Baird and his girl­friend, Kim­berly Gagnon, pleaded guilty to a $96,653 fraud in­volv­ing an el­derly cou­ple. Over a pe­riod of one year, from April 2010 to April of 2011, Baird, 36, and Gagnon, 34, ‘sucked’ a huge amount of money from the se­niors who they had ini­tially met on the park­ing grounds of a shop­ping cen­ter in Sher­brooke. The two crooks had used their chil­dren to draw sym­pa­thy to their cause. Pre­tend­ing, as an ex­am­ple, that the kids had not eaten for sev­eral days, be­cause they( the par­ents) were broke. Baird and Gagnon first asked for small amounts of money, but their needs grew as time went by. They al­ways came up with good enough rea­sons to stir the cou­ple’s, in their seven­ties, emo­tions, that is, un­til Baird wrote them a cheque that bounced back. That sounded the alarm and, $96,000 later, the vic­tims went to the Sher­brooke po­lice.

This was not Baird and Gagnon’s first crime. On May 16th, they were sched­uled to be in court for their sen­tence in an­other case for a sim­i­lar fraud they had been charged with one year ago. Just like they did last week, they pleaded guilty at the first op­por­tu­nity. Baird’s lawyer, Mia Manoc­chio, and Gagnon’s, Gabrielle Le­may, set the sen­tenc­ing date to May 11th, for both cases, but chances are that Manoc­chio will ask the court for a pre-sen­tenc­ing re­port for Baird. This means that the sen­tenc­ing will be pushed back to a later date. As for Gagnon, she cried with re­lief to be tem­po­rar­ily set free so that she could take care of her five chil­dren. Judge Con­rad Chapde­laine agreed to the re­quest. In the mean­while, it seems that the el­derly cou­ple will not get one penny back of that lit­tle for­tune that they gave away so in­no­cently.

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