As of press time, Kelly has not returned a call for comment.
The Coast detailed many of the same issues in our February 16 expose, “A trust betrayed,” which detailed Kelly’s mishandling of Thibeault’s affairs. Thibeault died in 2004, and as she requested, Kelly was appointed executor of her estate by the court in early 2005, but over the intervening seven years there has not been a full accounting of her money and property, and still some of Thibeault's 18 heirs have not received their inheritances. Six days after our story was published, Kelly announced he would not run for reelection. In the four months since, Kelly still has taken no action to resolve the the estate, and the heirs say that a deadline is looming for destruction of records.
“We beneficiaries have great concerns regarding the accounting of this estate,” write the heirs in their affidavit to the court. “We feel we have been more than patient and the the continual procrastination by the Executor"---mayor Kelly---"is going to make it next to impossible for true accounting of the estate. The constant procrastination of the Executor and our concerns regarding the accounting of the estate leaves us no alternative but to seek removal of Executor Peter Kelly. We are asking the Probate Court to exercise whatever means there are to prevent the destruction of the bank records as we believe they are critical to the settling of the Estate.”
Mary Thibeault’s bank records can be legally destroyed seven years after the last transaction from her accounts---which was August 19, 2005, when Peter Kelly transferred $121.587.13 from Thibeault’s account to an account he controlled. Seven years later will be this coming August 19.
The affidavit calling for Kelly’s removal as executor is signed by heirs Gregory Oldfield, Elizabeth Herritt, Catherine Ivany, Raymond Ivany and Phillis Brunt, all of the Halifax area. To support their argument that Kelly should be removed as executor, the five heirs make several points, each supported with extensive documentation, including:
Time Thibeault died on December 7, 2004. More than seven years and seven months later, the estate has not been settled.
Lack of reporting “Despite numerous requests to Executor Peter Kelly,” reads the affidavit, “information either not provided or mistruths told.”
Inventory No itemized inventory of Thibeault’s estate has been provided, as required by the Probate Act.
Transfers to Kelly The heirs itemize $155,000 in cheques written from Thibeault’s bank account to Kelly and his son, presented to the bank after Thibeault’s death. They also itemize five cheques totalling $25,000 written to Kelly, which seems to be represented as Kelly’s share of the estate. Additionally, the heirs list a June 28, 2006 cheque written to “cash” for $3,423.60 “described as ‘trailer rent’,” and a second cheque dated November 18, 2007 for $3,000, “described as trailer rent---$2,571.29 US Funds.”
*Willful default” Despite Kelly’s claims that cheques were written to pay for trailer rent, the heirs claim that the estate lost the value of a mobile home Thibeault owned in Florida because Kelly did not make rental payments for it.
Kearney Lake land As the Coast detailed in a March 24, 2011 article (“Peter Kelly’s failure of will”), Thibeault owned a small property behind Kearney Lake.
"That land is being donated to the municipality for parkland,” Kelly told us at the time. "When I spoke to the lawyer, it's in the process of being done, so there's no---it's going to go to the municipality as parkland. It's going to them. It was always the intent to go to them in memory of [Mary Thibeault] and that's in the process of being done."
But, say the heirs in their affidavit asking for Kelly’s removal, “none of we beneficiaries have been notified of anything regarding the land.” City officials confirmed this week that no parkland donation has been made from the Thibeault estate, or by Kelly.
Thibeault’s US funds The Coast has learned that Thibeault had both US and Canadian citizenship, and her death certificate cites a US Social Security number. In their letter asking for Kelly’s removal, the five heirs say they have received no communication regarding “Social Security payments to Mary Thibeault or if the IRS has been contacted regarding taxes she may owe or any over payments she may have received.”
The heirs’ statements in the affidavit have not been proven in court, and Kelly has 30 days to respond to them. The court has scheduled a September 19 hearing over the matter.