Defense Seeking Conditional Discharge For Priest

Former Tecumseh priest Robert Couture leaves court after jury finds him guilty of theft over $5000, December 10, 2015. (Photo by Maureen Revait)

The Superior Court heard sentencing submissions in the case of Father Robert Couture today.

In December a jury found Couture guilty of theft over $5,000 after reviewing evidence that he stole between $170,000 to $234,000 from Ste. Anne’s parish in Tecumseh.

Crown attorney Tom Meehan is seeking a 15-month custodial sentence, plus two years probation because of the amount stolen and the breach of trust involved in the crime. Meehan is also seeking Couture pay $178,624 to the insurance company that paid the church for its losses.

Defense Patrick Ducharme would like to see a conditional discharge that would leave Couture with no criminal record. Ducharme says this would be a fair sentence as Couture maintains his innocence and the amount of money lost cannot be exactly determined.

The judge will issue his sentence on October 3, 2016 at 2pm.