CORNWALL, Ontario – The former head of a community-advocacy group, well known throughout the city and region, is now at the centre of a police fraud investigation.
Gilles Latour, 47, a financial advisor who once helmed Team Cornwall and operates his own wealth management firm in the city, has been arrested and charged with fraud over $5,000, theft by conversion, false pretenses and breach of trust, police said Tuesday.
Latour could not be immediately reached for comment. None of the charges against him have been proven in court.
Police allege between May, 2012 and December, 2013 a man defrauded two individuals and police were contacted to investigate.
On Tuesday police attended Latour's Second Street East place of work and arrested him. He was later released to appear in court.
Cornwall police Const. Dan Cloutier would not get into specifics when contacted by Seaway News, including divulging dollars figures attached to the investigation.
"We won't go there," he said. "Right now we have two victims coming forward."
When asked if police expected to hear from more people Cloutier was likewise non-committal.
"Two individuals came forward and invested money," he said. "And they felt they were defrauded and an investigation commenced."
Latour is well-known throughout the city through his time as Team Cornwall chair. He was first elected to that position in 2001. Among his most recent accolades, Latour received the inaugural ambassador of the year award, presented by the Cornwall and Area Chamber of Commerce in 2013.
He has enjoyed the endorsement of local high-profile residents, and others from outside the community.
Latour and former CTV News anchor Max Keeping partnered to help create the Cornwall chapter of the Max Keeping Foundation, which helps underprivileged children pay for registration and equipment fees to play minor sports.
Under his Team Cornwall leadership, membership grew by 25 per cent and events such as the annual golf tournament and year in review surged in popularity.
Peter Gault, who succeeded Latour as head of Team Cornwall not long ago, said the group has conducted a review of its books.
"Everything is in order," he said. "We went back over a number of years.
"I can tell you he is the past chair, and I am the chair now.
"(The police charges) came as a total surprise."
That surprise also moved into political circles.
"Gilles Latour is a long-time personal friend and my thoughts are with him and his family at this time," said Mayor Bob Kilger.
Gault said Team Cornwall will continue to advocate on behalf of the city and its residents.