CORNWALL Ontario – For one area family the nightmare of what’s happened to them seems to have had salt rubbed into it. The family lost their life savings, and their home to convicted fraud artist Neil Shah who bilked people for over $2,000,000 million dollars.
Mr. Shah is currently serving over 5 years in prison for his deeds with the judge being quite stern about him as he was convicted of most of the crimes after his initial arrest.
The only proceeds his victims have received to date have been from the little that has come from the sale of a home and an expectation to recover some money from the sale of a sports memorabilia collection.
The double irony is that the family trusted Neil because of his well respected father Dr. Nat Shah. As a matter of fact Dr. Shah was their personal physician. (No suggestions have been made of Dr. Shah by any of the victims.)
The family recently attended Neil’s day parole hearing. The concept being that Neil would be released to earn minimum wage to repay what he owes at his father’s office, a Mercedes dealership, and convenience store according to victims present at the hearing.
The astonished victims in attendance looked at a stack of letters from prominent people asking that Neil be granted parole; but what upset them the most was a middle aged gentleman in street clothes who made a point of stating that he was appearing on Neil’s behalf not as Chief of Police of Cornwall Ontario; but as a friend of the family.
The family wishes to not have their name published, but shared via exclusive interview with CFN the pain and hurt at seeing their own police chief there on behalf of a convicted criminal that destroyed their retirement and nearly left them homeless. They shared that they most likely would lose their doctor if Neil was working in the office too.
Jeremiah Fallon worked as Neil Shah’s bodyguard. He spoke on the record with us after he attended and witnessed the hearing.
He described some wild times involving prostitutes, fast cars, and hockey mostly.
Chief Parkinson confirmed to CFN via email that he did attend and speak on behalf of Mr. Shah. His version essentially matched that of Neil’s victims.
JG – I will confirm that I attended at Neil Shah’s application for day parole as an assistant. I will confirm that I attended on my own time, not as Chief of Police, but as a someone who has known the Shah family for the past ten years.
I will confirm that I spoke on in favor of Neil’s plan to start making meaningful restitution to the victim’s of his offences as soon as possible.
I will confirm that (prior to this hearing) Neil had already commenced making restitution to his victims through income earned by his having been granted escorted day passes to a place of employment nearby his current institutional placement. I will confirm that I spoke in favor of restorative justice.
He added in a second email reply:
I can confirm that at the hearing I acknowledged the devastating impact Neil’s actions had on his victims. The family would be able to tell you that I qualified my attendance as a friend of the family and not the Chief of Police.
Today via email he said that he had nothing to add.
Cornwall has a distinctly different response to victims and bad guys. Recently Mayor Bob Kilger responded to his bag man Gilles Latour of Latour Financial being arrested after a five month investigation via the Cornwall Community Police Service (without external agency participation or review) with comments of support to Mr. Latour without a word for his alleged victims.
On at least two consumer complaint websites there were allusions to Mr. Latour’s connections to the mayor and police.
He would go on and on about how he is best friends with the Mayor of Corwall (Bob Kilger) and past and present NHL hockey players like Scott Pearson, Police Officers as well as other well known business people.
Gilles Latour is a long-time personal friend and my thoughts are with him and his family at this time.
Of course Mayor Kilger was friends with Willie Wise too…
Chief Parkinson’s contract is at an end. Mayor Kilger is currently on the police board, his campaign manager, Pat Finucan, is the chair and some other
Liberal political cronies fill the remaining seats.
Mayor Kilger did not respond to our request asking if he in fact had sent in a letter of support for Neil Shah. The victims do not have access to whom wrote in on his behalf.
Neil Shah’s parole request was denied.
Do you think Chief Parkinson should have appeared at Neil Shah’s parole hearing? You can post your comment below and vote in our poll.
Both of our interview parties wanted an opportunity to speak to the Chief.
To date that hasn’t happened.