New sources have revealed that former Liberal MP Raj Grewal has been under investigation by the RCMP for months after he spent millions.
Grewal took the city by surprise after resigning his seat in Brampton East last week, citing personal and medical reasons as the issue. It later came to light that Grewal stepped down due to a gambling addiction.
Grewal released a statement last week addressing his gambling. “To my constituents and colleagues, you put your faith in me to serve. I enjoy my job – every minute of it. But recently, I knew I could no longer serve my constituents to the best of my ability due to my personal problem. It is for that reason, I decided to take some time to look after my health,” he said in a Facebook post.
The Globe Reports that Grewal’s gambling came into the spotlight after his activities triggered Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC). Under FINTRAC rules, casinos are required to report any transactions over $10,000 a day. Sources say there were several occasions where Grewal exceeded this amount, and by quite a bit.
Sources told the Globe & Mail Grewal has spent millions over the past three years on gambling, including at a casino near Parliament Hill.
Grewal’s dealings eventually prompted an RCMP investigation, which included looking into his financial transactions, and on occasion, following him to the casino.
Since his resignation, the state of Grewal’s financial affairs has also come to light. Grewal purchased two condo suites in downtown Toronto earlier this year for $1,295,575, and obtained a mortgage from HSBC Canada for $1,499,999 to finance it.
In August, a numbered company based in Brampton, 2206492 Ontario Inc., placed a lien against one of the suites purchased by Grewal.
Grewal has lines of credit with Royal Bank of Canada, Toronto Dominion Bank and Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotiabank) and has been listed as the co-debtor of three other liens this year.
In the spring Mr. Grewal and another person took out a lease on a 2018 Jeep Wrangler with a value of $45,802 and then in November Grewal and the same man leased a 2019 RAM truck with a $56,421 value.
In the summer, Grewal and ZGemi Inc., a construction company in Brampton, secured a Scotiabank loan for a 2017 Land Rover valued at $116,824.
Currently, Grewal is also being investigated by the Ethics Commissioner for inviting Yusuf Yenilmez, CEO of ZGemi Inc., to an event during the Prime Minister’s visit to India earlier in 2018.
Grewal has also reported employment income from the company through disclosures to the Ethics Commissioner, income he’s received during his time as an MP.
In a tweet, Monday the Office of the Ethics Commissioner said that the investigation into Grewal that prompted by the NDP will continue despite his resignation.
The inquiry into the conduct of MP Grewal will continue as soon as possible in spite of his resignation.
— CIE@CIEC_CCIE (@CIEC_CCIE) November 26, 2018
While the RCMP hasn’t confirmed or denied whether it’s investigating Grewal, The PM’s office has confirmed that inquiries have been made by the RCMP regarding the complaint to the ethics commissioner.
Grewal says he recognized he had a problem and is spending the time to focus on his mental health and on his family. “I am taking responsibility for my actions, and I will continue to work for a better Brampton East.”
Source – The Globe & Mail
This article was updated on November 27 to include a statement from Raj Grewal