1978 – Bruce Carson writes a rubber cheque. The court orders him to pay a company $1900 in restitution.
1979 – Bruce Carson defaults on mortgage payments and loses his house.
1980 – Bruce Carson defaults on a lease of a Lincoln Continental. Court orders him to come up with $3000.
1981 – Bruce Carson is jailed for 18 months and loses his licence to practice law after being convicted of two fraud counts where he stole money from his clients. His troubles are attributed at the time to his high-flying lifestyle.
1990 – While working for the federal government, Bruce Carson is charged and convicted with three counts of fraud. In relation to the charges, he is ordered by the court to continue psychiatric treatment at the Royal Ottawa Hospital.
1993 – Bruce Carson declares bankruptcy, owing $103,000.
2002 — Bruce Carson this time owes $369,000, and puts forward a proposal at this time to forestall another bankruptcy proceeding.
2004 – Bruce Carson joins Stephen Harper’s team, working for the Conservatives. Harper is then opposition leader.
2006 – Bruce Carson has a dispute with the Canada Revenue Agency about unpaid taxes for the years 2003, 2004 and 2005.
He continues to work as part of Stephen Harper’s transition team when Harper begins as Prime Minister. Bruce Carson is given Secret clearance.
(“Any investigator in my 33-years’ experience, nobody would have recommended to keep that guy. Nobody,” said former CSIS intelligence officer Michael Juneau-Katsuya.)
(It was “absolutely implausible” that Carson could function as a senior official with only a Secret-level clearance, according to a one-time staffer in the Prime Minister’s office who spoke anonymously to the Canadian Press.)
2010 – Bruce Carson’s girlfriend, 22 year old Michele McPherson, signs a contract entitling her to a 20% share of gross sales in a project to sell water filtration systems to Indian reserves. Bruce Carson’s name is on her contract as a witness. In December Carson and McPherson purchase a house together.
2011 – Allegations of influence peddling are levelled against Bruce Carson in relation to his girlfriend and her sales job. When the allegations arise, Stephen Harper who had worked with Carson since his time as a Reform MP, claims he didn’t know a thing about Bruce Carson’s shady past.
“Had anyone checked with Carson’s former colleagues at the Library of Parliament, they would presumably have found what The Canadian Press found: Praise for his work but also tales about disappearances from work, dubious excuses for his absences, constant money woes and at least one instance of running up unauthorized charges on a colleague’s credit card.” –Winnipeg Free Press
“A former advisor to Prime Minister Stephen Harper — now at the centre of a major political scandal — worked closely with Canada’s biggest energy companies over past years to improve the public image of Alberta’s oil sands.
“That advisor, Bruce Carson, did this while leading an academic think tank funded with $15 million in federal money.” The Tyee
Update: July 27, 2012: The RCMP lays charges against Carson.