Failed Penticton hockey dorm proponents face criminal charges

Two men are being charged with three criminal offences in relation to the now defunct Okanagan Elite Hockey Association.

Owner Wade Wagstaff of Grizzly Excavating Ltd. surveys the idle construction site where a proposed dormitory was to be built. He and other contractors who have already done substantial work there are currently waiting to see when or if they will get paid. Wagstaff is glad the municipality protected taxpayers from having to pay the fees but feels he

Two men are being charged with three criminal offences in relation to the now defunct Okanagan Elite Hockey Association.

Loren Reagan and Michael Gordon Elphicke are both charged with fraud and theft over $5,000  related to the Okanagan Elite Hockey Association. They also are facing a charge related to operating an unauthorized lottery scheme in 2011 and 2012. Information from the Penticton court states the charges were sworn on Jan. 29, 2015.

The association was involved in a civil suit in 2012 with parents who had raised over $100,000 through fundraising efforts to send minor hockey players to Europe, when the trip was abruptly cancelled.

The lawyer representing the parents, Nathan Wahoski, told the Western News in 2012 that nobody knew where the money went.

“The bottom line is that someone took the money and used it for other things, maybe used it for personal reasons,” Wahoski said.

Reagan was also tied into a failed project to build a hockey dormitory next to the South Okanagan Events Centre, which came to a crashing end in March 2012, after news about the OEHA fraud suit came to light and his backers, Citation Ventures, pulled out, also accusing him of fraudulent business practices.

Some of the parents’ money may have been used to help secure the deal Reagan was making with the city.

Wahoski told the Western News that he had cheques showing that the City of Penticton unknowingly received some money from the fund as well as substantial amounts paid to Reagan personally.

Citation Ventures also provided the Western News with a copy of a wire transfer showing that $20,000 was transferred on Nov. 21, 2011 to them from one of the accounts named in the application requesting the court freeze the assets of the OEHA.

Though Reagan’s $925,000 deal to buy the Eckhardt properties never went through, he nevertheless began construction until the city issued a stop work order.

When the hockey dorm deal crashed, the contractors hired by Reagan went unpaid, and Penticton, along with Elphicke, Reagan and the OEHA were named in $1.6 million worth of civil suits from the contractors. Two of the companies have since discontinued their claims against Elphicke.

In March 2013, Elphicke created a Facebook group “Bring Loren Peter Reagan (Mason) To Justice,” where he claims he was defrauded by his former business partner as well.

Elphicke and Reagan will appear in court on separate dates in April.

 

Just Posted

‘Hero’ kid fighting cancer helping with B.C. Children’s Hospital fundraiser

Penticton’s Wills Hodgkinson helping raise funds for B.C. Children’s Hospital

Vees add another notch to the win column

The team beat the Surrey Eagles 4-1 in the Bauer BCHL Showcase on Sept. 20

50-site RV park proposed for Okanagan Falls

An applicant has requested the property area be rezoned to Commerical Tourist instead of Industrial

City council passes tax exemptions without discussion

Permissive tax exemptions approved for 2019

Watch out for Pavement Patty: Drivers warned outside B.C. elementary school

New survey reveals unsafe school zones during 2018 back-to-school week

Who’s running in Penticton’s election?

Candidates for the Penticton municipal and school board election

Horvat leads Canucks to 4-3 shootout victory over Kings

Vancouver dumps L.A. in NHL pre-season contest

Update: Search called off for missing plane between Edmonton and Chilliwack

Search efforts were concentrated along the Highway 5 corridor between Valemount and Kamloops

Why Whistler for ski jumping in 2026? Calgary proposal gets pushback

Calgary 2026 proposes re-using the 2010 ski jumping venue Whistler for that sport and nordic

VIDEO: Hundreds line highway as family brings home body of B.C. teen

Northern B.C. showed their support by lining Hwy 16 as Jessica Patrick’s body returned to Smithers.

Despite progress, threat of 232 tariffs dominates NAFTA negotiations

Any deal is seen to require congressional approval before Dec. 1 to survive new Mexican government

B.C. MP Todd Doherty receives award for saving man who collapsed on a plane

Conservative MP was flying from Vancouver to Prince George, B.C., in June last year

Alleged border jumper from Oregon facing 2 charges after police chase in B.C.

Colin Patrick Wilson charged with dangerous operation of motor vehicle, flight from a peace officer

Most Read