Former Conservative party staffer Michael Sona has been convicted of trying to prevent voters from casting ballots during the 2011 federal election. Sona, 25, was the only person charged in what has come to be known as the robocalls scandal, in which automated calls were set up to target voters in Guelph — most of them Liberal supporters — with misleading instructions on where to vote. After a long recounting of the trial’s testimony, Superior Court Justice Gary Hearn said he was convinced “well beyond a reasonable doubt” that Sona was guilty. Sona hung his head and family members fought back tears as Hearn explained his decision.
Sona was “very disappointed” by the ruling, said his lawyer, Norm Boxall.
Croft Michaelson, the Crown prosecutor, said he was pleased with result, adding “we’ll be making very forceful submissions on sentencing in October.” He added: “If there was any political party that actively participated in a scheme to endeavour to prevent electors from voting … that would be very serious conduct.”
“Anyone who engages in this kind of conduct, where there’s evidence that they endeavoured to prevent electors from voting, I think based on what took place in court today and what you’ve seen us do in relation to this case, I would expect they would be prosecuted.”