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Counterfeit bill case goes to court

A small amount of counterfeit money turned up in Kelowna last summer and on Friday (Jan. 10) the matter was being heard at the Kelowna Courthouse.

Jesse Samuel Mcdonald and Lindsay Dawn Purdy both pleaded guilty to various counterfeiting charges, and while the latter’s matter is still in front of the court, the former was sentenced.

The court heard from Crown prosecutors at both a provincial and federal level stemming from separate incidents involving Mcdonald, that took place last summer.

He pleaded guilty to four counts, including possessing counterfeit money, possessing a prohibited weapon without a license and two counts of using counterfeit money.

Those two incidents took place in Kelowna, when Mcdonald first passed off an American $50 bill at Toys 'R Us, and then again at Duncan’s Bistro and Bar.

Security footage helped identify Mcdonald at Toys 'R Us, and a Duncan’s employee was able to pick out both Mcdonald and Purdy from a photo lineup.

After leaving Duncan’s in a taxi, police checked records and were able to determine the couple was staying at home on High Road. Police executed a search warrant at that residence and discovered numerous items associated with making counterfeit money, special paper and partial bills.

The court heard that the two had been in a relationship for the past six years and were addicted to heroin while committing the crimes, but it was Purdy who was the antagonist. Mcdonald had been nabbed after trying to sell half an ounce of PCP (commonly known as angel dust) to an RCMP officer as part of a ‘sting’ operation earlier in the summer and had tried to steer Purdy away from that lifestyle.

Mcdonald, who has spent the past 100 days in jail called it an “eye-opening experience”, and apologized to his family who were also in the courtroom.

He was credited those 100 days in jail as part of his six month conditional sentence, of which the first three months will be spent at Knight Castle Recovery centre in Surrey, before he hopefully moves to Freedom’s Door in Kelowna – a residential treatment facility for men struggling with alcohol and drug dependency.

Purdy will be back in court on Feb. 20, 2014.

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