OPP officer on bail in corruption scandal

Police corruption is a form of police misconduct designed to obtain financial benefits, other personal gain, or career advancement for officers in exchange for not pursuing, or selectively pursuing, an investigation or arrest. One common form of police corruption is soliciting or accepting bribes in exchange for not reporting organized drug or prostitution rings or other illegal activities. Another example is police officers flouting the police code of conduct in order to secure convictions of suspects — for example, through the use of falsified evidence.

OPP officer on bail in corruption scandal

Postby Thomas » Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:21 am

More trouble for OPP officer on bail in corruption scandal

The senior Ontario Provincial Police officer at the centre of a judicial corruption scandal wiped tears from his eyes yesterday when a Justice of the Peace told him he would be granted bail.

But as Sgt. Mike Rutigliano, 49, was released from a Brampton courthouse to waiting family members, he faced fresh allegations.

The charges, filed in court yesterday, include careless storage of firearms and ammunition, possession of an explosive substance and possession of prohibited weapons.

These allegations relate to two rifles, crowd control grenades, shuriken throwing stars, nunchuka chain sticks and brass knuckles that police allegedly found on property he owns in Caledon and elsewhere.

But the wide-ranging charges for which the OPP court liaison officer was jailed earlier this month relate to alleged corruption and obstruction of justice offences in connection with three separate investigations. Their implications have shaken the legal community.

Dressed in a dark suit, the bearded officer looked haggard from more than a week in custody.

His wife and brother together pledged a $300,000 no-deposit guarantee for his release. He must report to the OPP Port Credit detachment twice a week.

One unusual condition on his release is that he not attend any courthouse except with his lawyers or for his own court proceedings.

"It was a thoughtful decision from an experienced justice," one of Rutigliano's lawyers, John Collins, said as he left court. Richard Peck, the prominent B.C. lawyer brought in by the attorney general to oversee the prosecution, declined to comment.

A publication ban has been placed on all evidence and arguments at the hearing.

OPP Det.-Insp. Phil George, who is in charge of the investigation, says the probe is continuing, including into possible organized crime connections. "I've always been surprised by what we've found. I really don't know where this is going to take us," he told reporters outside the courthouse.

He called the allegations an embarrassment to his profession. "I've never seen anything like this and I hope to never see it again."

In one set of charges, Rutigliano is alleged to have interfered in the sexual assault prosecution of former Steelback Brewery CEO Frank D'Angelo.

Last month, a judge acquitted D'Angelo of assaulting a business associate's 22-year-old daughter.

D'Angelo, 50, has been charged with obstruction of justice and attempt to obstruct justice in the Rutigliano probe.

The arrest of Rutigliano has raised serious concerns about the integrity of the province's court system.

So sensitive is the case that the province has installed former judge and integrity commissioner Coulter Osborne as an overseer.

Toronto Crown prosecutor Domenic Basile is named as an "unindicted co-conspirator" in court documents, a term rarely used in Canadian law.

Basile's lawyer, David Humphrey, says Basile has done nothing wrong and is distraught because his reputation has been impugned.

Rutigliano is barred from communicating with Basile and several Crown prosecutors.

The OPP officer is also charged with an alleged $15 million fraud targeting Bombardier Inc.

In a third set of charges, Rutigliano is charged with helping Peter Mavroudis, a con artist who has thrice been convicted of taking money in return for non-existent tickets to Maple Leaf games, "avoid prosecution in Ontario."

Rutigliano's next court appearance is June 8.

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/article ... on-scandal
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Re: OPP officer on bail in corruption scandal

Postby Thomas » Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:34 am

Woman charged in OPP corruption case

A 35-year-old city woman is facing theft and other charges today in connection with the ongoing police corruption case surrounding veteran Mississauga OPP Sgt. Mike Rutigliano.

On Tuesday, the OPP's Criminal Investigation Branch arrested Mississauga resident Jurgita Kuktiene.

She and Rutigliano are accused of helping Peter Mavroudis, 50, obtain false identification back in 2007 to evade arrest for a number of outstanding criminal charges relating to selling bogus tickets to Toronto Maple Leafs games.

Mavroudis, a former Streetsville Derbys junior hockey player, last month pleaded guilty to fraud charges as well as one count of obstructing justice and impersonation. He was sentenced to six years in jail.

Investigators said Mavroudis, who operated a business called Prime Ticket Connection out of a post office box in Whitby, falsely claimed his company was authorized to sell seats to Leafs games at the Air Canada Centre.

One victim paid him $172,000 for the rights to four low-level seats, then was unable to acquire the tickets as the National Hockey League season approached.

When the buyer finally demanded his money back, he never heard from Mavroudis again. All together, Mavroudis collected $370,00 from three customers but delivered no tickets.

In 2007, Mavroudis was out on bail facing fraud charges relating to the hockey tickets when he fled Ontario, fearing his life was in danger over debt.

Mavroudis was arrested in Vancouver in late 2008.

In addition to the Mavroudis case, Rutigliano is also facing corruption and obstruction of justice charges in connection with two other cases.

Kuktiene, who works at Talka Lithuanian Credit Union in Hamilton, is charged with theft over $5,000, conspiracy to attempt to obstruct justice and attempt to obstruct justice.

http://www.mississauga.com/news/news/article/148770
lrosella@mississauga.net
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Re: OPP officer on bail in corruption scandal

Postby Thomas » Sat Nov 03, 2012 5:50 pm

OPP officer charged with discreditable conduct

ORILLIA – A veteran Ontario Provincial Police officer at the centre of a criminal corruption scandal has been charged with discreditable conduct under the Police Services Act.

The charge relates to a 2002 meeting in Montreal that OPP Sgt. Mike Rutigliano "arranged and attended with members and associates of the Rizzuto traditional crime group, regarding a jewellery store in Woodbridge, Ontario," says the particulars of allegations.

"When questioned on or about February 19, 2004 as to your relationship with Vito Rizzuto, you provided false and misleading answers stating, 'I do not know the man, I have never met the man, I have never spoken to the man, I have never communicated with the man either in writing or electronically, nor have I ever had any association with him, directly, or indirectly'."

Rizzuto is considered Canada's top mob boss and is currently serving a prison sentence in the United States in connection with gangland killings.

In October 2002, when the Montreal meeting is alleged to have occurred, Rutigliano was working out of the Alcohol and Gaming Commission, where he had been since 1996.

The 50-year-old sergeant, who is suspended from the force, made his first appearance this morning at the OPP's general headquarters.

He declined to comment.

Insp. Charles Young asked the matter be put over until Sept. 28 at which time an "external prosecutor" will have been appointed and prepared to proceed.

Outside headquarters, Toronto defence lawyer Owen Wigderson said his client is not guilty of the charges though no plea was entered today.

"The timing of these allegations is certainly thought-provoking," Wigderson said.

"But until all of these cases are over everything that I have to say in my client's defence is going to be said in a courtroom."

Earlier this year, Rutigliano was released on bail after he was charged with corruption and obstruction of justice offences in connection with three separate investigations.

Rutigliano, who joined the provincial service in 1981, was working as the OPP's court case manager within the Toronto court system when the offences allegedly occurred.

In one set of charges, Rutigliano is alleged to have interfered in the sexual assault prosecution of former Steelback Brewery CEO Frank D'Angelo.

D'Angelo was acquitted of assaulting a business associate's 22-year-old daughter. He has been charged with obstruction of justice and attempt to obstruct justice.

In 2004, Rutigliano was found guilty under the PSA of discreditable conduct for making a threat to a former business associate.

Two years earlier, York Regional Police charged Rutigliano with "threat to property," though the charge was withdrawn and the file relating to the matter destroyed.

The OPP officer is also charged with an alleged $15 million fraud targeting Bombardier Inc.

In a third set of charges, Rutigliano is charged with helping Peter Mavroudis, a con artist who has thrice been convicted of taking money in return for non-existent tickets to Maple Leafs games, "avoid prosecution in Ontario."

http://www.thestar.com/news/ontario/art ... le-conduct
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Re: OPP officer on bail in corruption scandal

Postby Thomas » Tue May 28, 2013 2:44 pm

A former OPP officer and Mississauga resident accused of obstruction and other criminal charges was in court this morning for a pre-trial hearing.

Mike Rutigliano, who was a sergeant with OPP, appeared before Justice Casey Hill in Superior Court in Brampton. No trial date has been set.

Rutigliano, a 28-year veteran before he left the OPP in 2011, faces obstruction charges in a case involving Mississauga beverage entrepreneur Frank D'Angelo, as well as numerous charges in a wide-ranging corruption and fraud probe.

In 2009, D'Angelo was acquitted of sexually assaulting a business associate's daughter in a hotel room near Yorkdale in Toronto.

Crown prosecutor Scott Fenton stayed charges of conspiracy to commit obstruction and obstruct justice against D'Angelo.

When D'Angelo was arrested in May 2009, investigators alleged he conspired with Rutigliano to obstruct, pervert or defeat the course of justice in relation to the sex assault charge.

Rutigliano is also alleged to have conspired with two former Bombardier employees in a $15-million fraud against the aircraft maker.

He's also facing several other charges.

http://www.mississauga.com/news-story/3 ... tion-case/
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Re: OPP officer on bail in corruption scandal

Postby Thomas » Sat Nov 23, 2013 6:28 am

Case against former OPP officer Michael Rutigliano falls apart

All 17 charges related to fraud and obstruction of justice have been dropped in the face of "substantial" police misconduct related to wiretaps.

Michael Rutigliano was charged, after a lengthy police investigation, with 17 offences, including breach of trust by a public official, attempt to obstruct justice, fraud, give a secret commission, and money laundering. But over the course of four years, the prosecution has unraveled.

The arrest of veteran OPP officer Michael Rutigliano in May 2009 was a media sensation.

Yet over the course of four years, the prosecution has been quietly unraveling, with the Crown withdrawing all of the charges after a series of complicated pre-trial defence motions in the Brampton courthouse.

Last month, Ontario Superior Court Justice Casey Hill stayed seven remaining fraud charges against Rutigliano after finding “substantial” and “multiple acts” of police misconduct related to the improper gathering of wiretap evidence.

The Crown conceded the Ontario Provincial Police committed “serious” violations when they listened to wiretapped conversations that Rutigliano had with his lawyers, breaching sacrosanct solicitor-client privilege.

Rutigliano had allegedly conspired with two former Bombardier employees in a $15 million fraud against the aircraft maker. Charges against the ex-Bombardier employee were also stayed. On Friday, the Crown filed an appeal of the ruling that led to the withdrawal of charges against Rutagliano.

Last January, the Crown withdrew three obstruction-of-justice charges relating to allegations Rutigliano helped a convicted fraudster “remain at large” and “avoid prosecution in Ontario,” according to court documents.

Also dropped were charges that Rutigliano used his position as the OPP’s Toronto court case manager to try to engineer the outcome of a sex assault case. The accused was Rutigliano’s old friend, former Steelback Brewery CEO Frank D’Angelo; the alleged victim was a business associate’s 22-year-old daughter.

Back in 2009, the D’Angelo-related charges dominated headlines and rocked the province’s justice system. The Attorney General took the rare step of appointing a retired judge, Coulter Osborne, to oversee the prosecution after allegations that Crown attorneys and other court staff may have been involved. Independent prosecutors Richard Peck, who handled the Michael Bryant case, and Scott Fenton were also brought in.

As the OPP’s court case manager in Toronto, Rutigliano knew many players in the criminal justice system, including judges, Crown attorneys, defence lawyers and trial coordinators.

After he turned up on the radar of an RCMP investigation into organized crime, his own force launched a probe and began wiretapping his phone.

Now, for the first time, details of the allegations against Rutigliano can be published after Hill’s 79-page ruling, issued on Oct. 28, lifted a publication ban on all related proceedings or rulings, including scores of wiretaps, emails and text messages that were part of the case.

In one 2009 recording that was presented in court after Rutigliano’s arrest, he discussed D’Angelo’s upcoming court hearings on the sex assault charges.

“There’s a person looking inside,” Rutigliano told D’Angelo on March 25, 2009. “There’s three judges I’m looking for and believe me, I’m gonna get ’em. I’m gonna get one of ’em. And if we get the one I want, it’s … this is a f-----g wash.”

The OPP also alleged Rutigliano conspired with D’Angelo “and the unindicted co-conspirator Domenic Basile” and others to obstruct, pervert, or defeat the course of justice in the prosecution of D’Angelo.

At the time, Basile was an assistant Crown attorney. He now practises in Toronto as a defence lawyer.

“Frankie, I was meeting with Dom Basile, who is the ... who is helping us with your problem,” Rutigliano told D’Angelo on Jan. 13, 2009.

On another occasion, Rutigliano and Basile were recorded discussing the fact Superior Court Justice John Hamilton had been picked to try D’Angelo’s case. Basile stated that it was a “100 per cent” guarantee that Hamilton would acquit D’Angelo.

“There’s a better chance I never eat pasta again,” Basile told Rutigliano on April 16, 2009.

Five days later, Hamilton acquitted D’Angelo of the sex assault.

In 2010, Rutigliano denied that he or anyone on his behalf interfered with the assignment of Hamilton as the trial judge.

He agreed to pose for a photograph this week but would not comment on the case, on his lawyer’s advice.

Defence lawyer David Humphrey, who represented Basile at the time of the Rutigliano probe, said ultimately “the police came to the right conclusion that there was not a basis for charging him.”

“The police thoroughly investigated the matter and they concluded, in fact, there had been no interference with the process involving the assignment of the judge to the case,” he said in an interview Thursday.

He noted that the Crown also withdrew all related charges against Rutigliano and D’Angelo, who was also charged with attempt to obstruct justice.

“It’s important that everybody understand that the police, who thoroughly investigated, never charged (Basile),” Humphrey said.

“That was just talk between him and Rutigliano, who was an old friend and someone he came to know through their work together. He was a police officer and Dom was a Crown prosecuting cases.”

Contacted through an intermediary, Hamilton, who retired in 2009, said Friday he had nothing to say or add.

Defence lawyer Owen Wigderson, who along with Scott Hutchison and Frederick Schumann represented Rutigliano, declined to comment on the case.

Rutigliano, 54, retired from the OPP in July 2011 after 30 years of service. Today he is an entrepreneur with interests in construction, home renovations and the manufacture of doors, windows and pasta.

By: Betsy Powell City Hall Bureau, Published on Fri Nov 22 2013

http://www.thestar.com/news/crime/2013/ ... apart.html
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Fraud charges against former OPP sergeant resurface

Postby Thomas » Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:32 pm

Fraud charges against former OPP sergeant resurface after top court quashes judge’s stay order

TORONTO — A former OPP officer and Mississauga resident has been ordered back to trial court after Ontario’s top court set aside a judge’s order that fraud-related charges against him be stayed.

Yesterday’s decision by the Ontario Court of Appeal means the case against Michael Rutligliano, 55, a sergeant and 28-year veteran before he left the OPP in 2011, and a co-accused Barry Pierson, have been remitted back to trial court.

After a lengthy police investigation, Rutigliano was charged with 17 offences, including breach of trust by a public official, attempt to obstruct justice, fraud, give a secret commission, and money laundering.

However, the Crown withdrew many of the charges over the last four years after a series of complicated pre-trial defence motions in the Brampton courthouse.

In fall 2013, Ontario Superior Court Justice Casey Hill stayed the seven remaining fraud charges against Rutigliano at the request of the Crown after finding “substantial” and “multiple acts” of police misconduct related to the improper gathering of wiretap evidence.

The Crown conceded the Ontario Provincial Police committed “serious” violations when they listened to wiretapped conversations that Rutigliano had with his lawyers, breaching solicitor-client privilege.

The Crown asked for the stay after Hill ordered that records documenting consultations between Crown counsel and police officers be produced to him so that he could determine whether they should be disclosed to the parties.

Hill made the order during an abuse of process motion brought on by the defence in relation to wiretap evidence.

On appeal, the Crown submits that solicitor-client privilege should only be breached if it is necessary, as a last resort, where factual innocence is at stake. It contends that innocence was not at stake in the pre-trial abuse of process motion and the motion judge erred in prematurely vitiating solicitor-client privilege.

The Court of Appeal agreed with the Crown’s appeal and set aside the stay of proceedings against Rutigliano and Pierson, ruling that Hill’s disclosure order, made before the conclusion of the abuse of process motion, “was premature and unnecessary.”

Rutigliano and Pierson’s lawyers submitted that it is not appropriate to remit the matter to the trial court as there is “no realistic possibility” that there will be a different result if the matter is remitted. They argued a stay of proceedings is inevitable.

But the appeals court judges say they are unable to make that determination.

“This appeal was brought before the abuse of process motion was finished,” the judges said in their ruling. “Without a full record or reasons on the abuse of process motion, this court is not in a position to determine whether or not a stay for abuse of process is inevitable.”

The remaining charges against the former cop and Pierson, a former Bombardier employee, are in connection with a $15-million fraud at Bombardier Inc.

Court records show Rutigliano is alleged to have conspired with two former Bombardier employees in a fraud against the aircraft maker.

Last January, the Crown withdrew three obstruction-of-justice charges relating to allegations Rutigliano helped a convicted fraudster “remain at large” and “avoid prosecution in Ontario,” according to court documents.

Also dropped were charges that Rutigliano used his position as the OPP’s Toronto court case manager to try to engineer the outcome of a sex assault case. The accused was Rutigliano’s old friend, former Steelback Brewery CEO Frank D’Angelo.

In 2009, D'Angelo was acquitted of sexually assaulting a business associate's daughter in a hotel room near Yorkdale in Toronto.

The Crown stayed charges of conspiracy to commit obstruction and obstruct justice against D'Angelo.

When D'Angelo was arrested in May 2009, investigators alleged he conspired with Rutigliano to obstruct, pervert or defeat the course of justice in relation to the sex assault charge. Those charges were also withdrawn.

-with files from Torstar

http://www.mississauga.com/news-story/5 ... tay-order/

http://myinforms.com/en-ca/a/14093157-f ... tay-order/
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