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B.C. Shriners suing dead treasurer's estate for $81,000

The philanthropic organization is suing the estate of a former treasurer for embezzlement.
B.C. Shriners are seeking the return of $81,050 allegedly taken by the group's Cowichan club treasurer.

A B.C. Shriners service group is suing a former and now-dead treasurer’s estate for $81,050 it says he took from the organization.

The Shriners of British Columbia and Yukon Child Services Society alleges Ian Milne, a Cowichan Shrine Club member as of May 2001, embezzled club funds.

The society is a philanthropic group that provides access to Shriners Children's hospital and travel assistance to associated medical facilities.

Milne died April 8, 2019. The next month, the new treasurer discovered missing funds and bank account inconsistencies, court documents said.

An investigation revealed Milne allegedly withdrew $92,550 from the club account and made cheques payable to himself and the Maple Bay Fire Department.

Milne had got a second signatory’s signature on blank cheques, the claim said. The claim also alleges Milne deposited $11,500 notated as originating with the fire department into the club’s account.

Milne was also treasurer of the Maple Bay Fire Hall, the claim asserted.

Court documents said the club has never had a charitable relationship with the North Cowichan Fire Department or any of its fire halls.

“Ian Milne’s conduct was oppressive to the Shriners and contrary to the morals and volunteer practices of the Shriners,” the claim said.

Also named as defendants in the notice of civil claim filed in B.C. Supreme Court on April 29 are Milne’s estate and Linda Milne.

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