Fraudster guilty of three crimes in Penticton hockey trip scam

One of the organizers of a failed hockey association in Penticton has been convicted of three criminal offenses after player parents were ripped-off for thousands of dollars.

The charges were laid after a planned hockey trip to Europe in the summer of 2012 through the Okanagan Elite Hockey Association was unexpectedly cancelled.

Michael Elphicke helped raise about $130,000 from the parents and from raffle proceeds for the cost of the trip.

However, Elphicke used some of the funds to enrich himself.

Some of the money was also used on a collapsed attempt by the association to build a hockey dormitory in Penticton.

READ MORE: Taxpayers may pay the price for hockey dorm fiasco

Some of the parents are suing to try to recover their money.

In 2012, the lawyer for the parent group, Nathan Wahoski, told Global Okanagan News “We don’t know where the money went. We know the money is gone. The two individuals that took the money are essentially blaming each other for misappropriating the money.”

Elphicke was found guilty of fraud and theft over $5,000 and unauthorized management of a lottery scheme.

A co-accused in the case, Elphicke’s former business partner Loren Reagan, did not show up for the trial and there’s a warrant for his arrest.

Elphicke has yet to be sentenced.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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