PC riding group shelved after sex raps surface

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PC riding group shelved after sex raps surface

The Ontario PC Party has dissolved its Barrie riding association after two board members were charged with gang sexual assault.

Riding association president Sarfraz Warraich, 42, of Barrie, has been charged with gang sexual assault and attempting to obstruct justice.

A second board member, 43-year-old Barrie resident Arif Mehmood, has also been charged with gang sexual assault.

Warraich turned down several requests to resign, according to two board members.

"I'm quite disgusted, actually," said board member Pat Hebert. "To me, it's just unconscionable, the charges, and that this gentleman has not stepped aside."

Warraich, a mortgage agent, was elected riding association president April 28.

When reached by The Barrie Examiner, yesterday afternoon, Warriach directed questions to his lawyer, David Wilcox, who did not immediately return phone calls.

Also charged with gang sexual assault are Ashfaq Gondal, 50, of Barrie; Sardar Muhammad, 45, of Barrie; and Zaidy Hussian, 37, of Innisfil. None of them are linked to the riding association, according to sources.

All five men -- four of whom have their occupations on court documents listed as taxi drivers -- are scheduled to appear in court next Wednesday.

An interpreter in Erdu, an official language in Pakistan, has also been requested for the court proceedings.

There is a publication ban on information that could identify the complainant or witnesses.