Appeal court rules Ottawa man who smuggled gold in rectum shouldn’t have to pay for market price hike

Appeal court rules Ottawa man who smuggled gold in rectum shouldn’t have to pay for market price hike

By Kieran Delamont | The Ottawa Citizen

How much does it cost to replace gold? It depends, because the price of gold fluctuates on the open market. That kind of thing matters if you’re a gold buyer, and it turns out that it also matters if you’re a gold thief.

Leston Lawrence and his lawyers used this to his advantage. In a decision by the Court of Appeal for Ontario, three judges ruled that Lawrence’s fine should be reduced by nearly $60,000 because the gold he stole from the Royal Canadian Mint was not as valuable when he stole and sold it as it was when he was ordered to pay it back.

In 2017, Lawrence was convicted of smuggling small gold pucks out of the mint where he worked by, as the Crown said, concealing them in his rectum and walking right out the front door. At sentencing, Lawrence was ordered to pay back roughly the value of the gold, which at the time of sentencing was about $190,000. If he couldn’t pay that money back in three years, he would have to serve a two-and-a-half-year stint in prison. (Get the full story at The Ottawa Citizen)

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