Finally, a little bit of good news to report on the crooked politician front: Sneaky Karen Cilevitz, Richmond Hill’s self-appointed Queen of Ward 5, was recently found guilty of fraud. Yet, despite the conviction, there remains a bitter aftertaste. In fact, the outcome of the Cilevitz fraud case makes one seriously question the justice system as well as the Municipal Act, when it comes to crime and punishment.
Before I address that aspect, allow me to recap Karen’s odious shenanigans…
Astute viewers might recall that last month Rebel News aired an exclusive interview with the person Karen Cilevitz had hoodwinked. That would be Patty Burton-Garcia. Patty was hired by Cilevitz to work as a part-time assistant for the councillor beginning in the summer of 2019. Her salary was $25,000; and Patty was paid approximately $900 every two weeks.
But as soon as Patty received her first paycheque, things took a weird twist. Namely, Cilevitz informed Patty that she and her boyfriend, Derek Christie, would be taking the lion’s share of Patty’s paycheque — typically about $800. Eventually, Cilevitz and Christie dinged Patty for some $21,000 – in other words, more than 80% of Patty’s actual earnings.
The motive for Cilevitz acting like the taxman on steroids was apparently financial desperation. It was around this time-period that Cilevitz was in the process of being docked a whopping 315 days’ pay. This was due to numerous successful complaints that had been filed against Cilevitz to the City of Richmond Hill’s integrity commissioner regarding her misbehaviour. Now, losing 315 days’ worth of pay is quite a hefty penalty given that there’s only 365 days in a year!
In any event, Patty actually agreed to this outrageous claw-back of her wages given that she had a desire to contribute to public service and that she was able to make ends meet thanks to her existing pension.
Patty was informed by her accountant that because on paper she was earning that full salary, she owed the Canadian Revenue Agency about $4,000. She was stunned. And when Patty told Cilevitz about the impending tax hit, the councillor allegedly responded with three words: “Not my problem.” Talk about chutzpah!
But it later became Karen’s problem, all right — big time — once law enforcement got involved. This was fraud, plain and simple. And not only was Patty being defrauded, so too were the residents of Richmond Hill given these were tax-dollars that Cilevitz was “redistributing” — redistributing into her own bank account, that is.
Well, this case dragged through the courts for some 18 months, but last week, a verdict was finally handed down: Cilevitz was found guilty of fraud under $5,000. And according to the court, Cilevitz has allegedly paid back full restitution to the City of Richmond Hill. Where this cash-challenged person got that moolah is anyone’s guess.
But here’s the thing: this conviction was the result of a plea deal. The original charge was fraud OVER $5,000. And Cilevitz also faced a charge of breach of trust by a public officer. She was caught red-handed; there was evidence galore. So why a plea deal in the first place?
And another thing that makes me question the justice system regarding this case and it’s the so-called penalty. Most would argue that Cilevitz should be behind bars for what she did. But instead, this fraudster will serve a three-month conditional sentence. Meaning that she is required to remain in her residence every day between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. except for emergencies. Because, you see, for the last several months, Cilevitz has existed as a house hermit. She hasn’t even shown up to numerous council meetings in person, deciding to simply Zoom in her contributions, such as they are. So how is that being confined to quarters between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. is a penalty in the first place when Cilevitz already voluntarily confines herself to quarters on a 24/7 basis?
And Holy Patrick Brown, Batman! In the aftermath of this humiliating criminal conviction, you would think that Cilevitz would be full of contrition and issuing mea culpas. But no. Just like Sneaky Patrick, a familiar pattern emerges: namely, she breaks the rules; she gets caught breaking the rules; and then she plays the victim card, claiming that for some unfathomable reason, so many people are out to get her as part of some grand conspiracy. It’s pathetic.
We did reach out to Karen Cilevitz to get her side of the story. We even visited her rented condominium. But she declined to comment. However, she’s all-over social media shedding crocodile tears about her plight – while blaming others for it. Her rants are vomit-inducing, quite frankly, given how tone deaf she is. Indeed, check out this nugget:
Over the past 4 ½ years I have been on the receiving end of ongoing hateful and hate-filled bullying enduring abusive and malicious treatment including cyber-bullying on Facebook.
Oh, there’s been bullying these past 4½ years all right. Except Cilevitz was not on the receiving end. Rather, when it comes to bullying, she’s the star quarterback. Case in point: you might recall her infamous recorded rant in which Karen went after Richmond Hill resident Steffi Goodfield. At the time, Steffi was a stage 4 cancer patient. And what was Steffi’s crime, you ask? Well, Steffi had the utter gall to use the words “Ward 5” to describe a music festival she was organizing in… Ward 5. But Crazed Karen apparently thinks she owns the copyright for the term “Ward 5.” Check out this 2-minute slice of utter insanity, starting at 2:20.
And much like how the good people of Brampton are cursed with Patrick Brown, so too are the folks in Richmond Hill who are stuck with Karen Cilevitz. You see, under the Municipal Act, she’s still allowed to sit on council. And she’s allowed to run for re-election in the fall.
But how can this be? It was just proven in a court of law that she defrauded the city out of thousands of dollars – and now this fraudster can continue to carry out making financial decisions for the city? That’s outrageous. And methinks the Municipal Act clearly needs to be revised so that elected fraudsters are kept away from the taxpayer-funded cookie jar.