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Former York police officer starts jail sentence after appeal shot down

York Regional Police say a former officer convicted of several corruption-related charges has begun serving a jail sentence of more than 7 years this week. (Greg Ross/CBC - image credit)
York Regional Police say a former officer convicted of several corruption-related charges has begun serving a jail sentence of more than 7 years this week. (Greg Ross/CBC - image credit)

A former York Regional Police officer has started his seven-and-a-half year jail sentence after an Ontario court shot down his appeal over corruption-related charges earlier this week.

Richard Senior was convicted of eight charges in November 2021, including trafficking substances such as cocaine and steroids, possessing a weapon obtained by crime and breaching trust.

Police said in a news release that the Ontario Court of Appeal dismissed his case on Wednesday. Following the dismissal, police say Senior resigned from the force and was brought into custody to begin his sentence.

"This unacceptable criminal behaviour is not tolerated by our organization and my thanks go to the members who investigated this case and the prosecutors who secured the convictions," said police Chief Jim MacSween.

"This is not a reflection of the hard-working, dedicated and professional members working each day to keep our community safe. We remain committed to being transparent and accountable to our community," he said.

Senior, a 16-year veteran and former constable with the force, was arrested and charged in October 2018 after an investigation by York police that started earlier that year.

According to the release, investigators found he was involved in a "number of criminal enterprises," including the attempted armed robbery of a quantity of cocaine, the theft and illegal possession of a York Regional Police shotgun, the trafficking of steroids to another officer, trafficking cocaine and the disclosing of confidential police information.

He was ultimately prosecuted on 14 charges in the Superior Court of Justice but only convicted of eight, police said.

Senior was suspended without pay for over four years starting in January 2020, police said.

Under the Police Services Act, a chief can't withhold pay from officers unless they are convicted and sentenced.