By Jorge Barrera
APTN National News
A former aide to Prime Minister Stephen Harper facing an influence peddling charge linked to a plan to sell water filtration systems to First Nation reserves is facing surgery for a suspected cancer growth in his lung, forcing the postponement of his July 22 trial date.
Bruce Carson, who was once acting chief of staff in the Prime Minister’s Office, is scheduled to go in for surgery on July 15 and is expected to remain in hospital for eight days. Doctors found a growth in his lung that is suspected to be cancer.
News of Carson’s ailment surfaced Friday during a court hearing in Ottawa to set a new trial date. The new date will be set during a Sept. 9 court hearing.
The RCMP began the process of serving subpenas about two weeks ago.
Carson is facing an influence peddling charge stemming from a now shuttered Ottawa water company’s plan to sell filtration system to First Nations reserves grappling with clean water woes.
Carson’s fiancee, a former Ottawa escort, had a deal with the company, H2O Global, giving her a large percentage of revenues from the sale of filtration systems. Carson, who lobbied on behalf of the company, initialed the contract.
Carson was once a confidant of Harper’s and the Conservative government invested $15 million to create a think tank in Calgary, the Canada School of Energy and Environment, that the former PMO aide ended up heading. Carson was heavily involved in designing a strategy to promote the tar sands.
Carson left the think tank after Harper’s office asked the RCMP, the lobbying and ethics commissioners to investigate his activities on behalf of the water company.