Two Ste. Anne residents have been charged following an investigation into fundraising fraud by the Winnipeg Police Service.
In January 2021, an event organizer contacted the Children's Hospital Foundation of Manitoba or CHFM, proposing a virtual fishing tournament fundraiser called the "Full Tilt Winter Walleye Tournament." The CHFM was led to believe that the net proceeds would be donated to their Foundation.
The Foundation agreed and allowed the organizer to use their logo for event advertising. The organizer then secured numerous corporate sponsors who provided prizes to the event believing it was for a charitable cause. As a result, 492 registrations were received, resulting in $22,147.00 in entry fees being collected.
After the event, $9,118 of the funds raised was dispersed as prize money to participants. The Foundation never received the remaining $13,029.
In December of 2021, the Winnipeg Police Service's Financial Crime Unit kicked off their investigation. Officers determined that the organizer and a co-accused retained the remaining funds for their own financial gain.
Between October 20th and November 2nd, Heather Neuert, a 39-year-old female and Christian Thomas Gord Lillyman, a 40-year-old male, both of St. Anne, MB, were charged with the following offences:
- Theft Over $5000.00
- Fraud Over $5000
- Laundering Proceeds of Crime
- Criminal Breach of Trust
Both were released on Undertakings as mandated by the Criminal Code.