Man faces fraud charges after bilking Orillia business: OPP

Investigators believe there may be other victims and encourage them to reach out to police




The Central Region Fraud Unit and the Huron County Crime Unit of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) has arrested and charged a suspect in relation to multiple fraud investigations.

In April 2023, the Orillia Detachment received a report from a local business identifying a breach to their email system. A fraud occurred where cheques were redirected from the intended business to the suspect in Guelph, incurring a loss of $6,954. The case was turned over to the Central Region Fraud Unit, and further investigation led to the identification of a suspect.

In June 2023, Huron County Detachment of the OPP entered a separate fraud investigation which was turned over to the Huron County Crime Unit. Similar to the fraud investigation in Orillia, the identified suspect had funds redirected from a local business to their own account in the form of e-transfers totalling $27,181.

Investigators from the Central Region Fraud Unit and Huron County Crime Unit collaborated, and on Dec. 19, 2023, David Cooper, a 78-year-old from Guelph, was arrested and charged in Rockwood, Ont.

The accused was charged by the Central Region Fraud Unit for the following:

    •    Use, deals, acts on forged document

    •    Fraud over $5,000

    •    Possession property obtained by crime over $5,000

The accused was charged by the Huron County Crime Unit for the following:

    •    Fraud over $5,000

    •    Possession property obtained by crime

The accused was released and is scheduled to appear before the Ontario Court of Justice in Goderich on Feb. 5, 2024, and the Ontario Court of Justice in Orillia on Feb. 13, 2024.

Investigators believe there may be more victims and would encourage them to reach out and report any fraud to their local OPP Detachment or Municipal Police Service.

Members of the OPP are committed to public safety, delivering proactive and innovative policing in partnership with our communities. Officers value your contribution to building safe communities. If you have information about suspected unlawful activity, please contact the OPP at 1-888-310-1122 or Crime Stoppers to remain anonymous at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or online.


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Port of Orillia open for business during construction: Chamber

There are many nearby parking alternatives along with a waterfront shuttle, officials say, while asking people not to cycle or in-line skate on boardwalk




Despite the construction along Centennial Drive and the boat ramp, the Port of Orillia is operational and prepared for a busy 2023 season.

The Orillia & District Chamber of Commerce (ODCC), a non-profit organization of approximately 550 Orillia and area businesses, operates the Port of Orillia and directs any profits back into the community through its festivals and events, and through its programs supporting local business.

While access to the parking at the Waterfront Centre may be impacted by the roadwork for a portion of the season, there are many nearby parking alternatives for those visiting the Port of Orillia this summer. A temporary 105-space municipal will be available at 20 Front St. S., just a few minutes walk from the Port.

In addition, the municipality is operating a waterfront shuttle departing from Municipal Lot 6 (107 West Street South) in the downtown area. Many downtown off-street and on-street parking spaces are located within a 10-15 minute walk from the Port, and there is a fabulous selection of unique shops and restaurants to visit along the way.

“While the ongoing construction presents a temporary inconvenience, the boating public should know that the improvements with both the lot behind the Waterfront Centre and the boat ramp are going to bring amazing change at the Port of Orillia,” says ODCC Executive Director and Port of Orillia Harbour Master Allan Lafontaine.

“In the past, sand and phosphate runoff from storm drains created challenges like sandbars and weed growth. The new construction will bring positive changes that include collection of runoff materials and we expect weed growth will slightly diminish,” he added.

There are some important safety precautions that Lafontaine wants the public to be aware of during the construction, saying “We are asking the public to be patient with construction, and understand that the rules prohibiting cycling, rollerblading, and e-scooter transportation on the boardwalks and walkways at the Port of Orillia continue to apply during this time.”

Due to boats docking at the seawall and high levels of pedestrian traffic on the boardwalk, the addition of faster-moving traffic such as bicycles to the space creates a serious safety risk. The biggest concerns centre around someone falling into the

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