Skip to content

Prosecutors seek jail time for Coquitlam man convicted of multiple sex crimes

Crown asks that man who committed offences against young male victims over a 43-year period be imprisoned for up to a dozen years.
Raymond Howard Gaglardi. | Coquitlam RCMP

A Coquitlam man convicted of 11 sex crimes dating back to the early 1970s should be jailed for up to a dozen years, Crown Counsel submitted today (Dec. 14) during a sentencing hearing.

Prosecutor Jay Fogel told Justice W. Paul Riley that Raymond Howard Gaglardi — who also went by the name of Dr. Ray while working as a "therapist" and guidance leader for churches in the Tri-Cities, Burnaby and Vancouver — should serve 17 to 24 consecutive years behind bars, or 10 to 12 years reduced under the totality principle.

During the morning hearing at BC Supreme Court in New Westminster today (Dec. 14), the judge heard victim impact statements from three men who spoke of Gaglardi's manipulation of trust when they were children, their loss of innocence and faith as a result, and how his crimes impacted their future relationships, including with women and authority figures.

The victims' names cannot be printed because of a publication ban.

"I trusted Ray," one man said from the witness box, breaking down in tears after he said Gaglardi sexually assaulted him while he was a young parishioner at Coquitlam's Hillside Community Church.

"I thought he was a real doctor."

Crown Counsel said Gaglardi, 78, showed a pattern over his 43 years of offending, when he was 27 to 70 years old.

He groomed vulnerable boys and young men at churches where he practised his "alternative therapies," sometimes inviting them to stay overnight at his home for the weekends to escape their troubled or broken domestic lives.

In one case, the victim was 10 years old and saw Gaglardi as a father figure, the court heard.

"He believed he was a doctor of psychology," Crown Counsel said, noting Gaglardi touched the boy’s penis at a swimming pool.

In another indecent assault case, dating from 1971 to 1974, Gaglardi felt the testicles and penis of a 14-year-old boy on three occasions: twice in his office to check for venereal disease, and once at a summer camp in Sechelt hosted by Glad Tidings Church.

When the boy confided in his father about the incidents, his dad disowned him, the court heard.

In 1977, when Gaglardi was 33, he sexually touched a 12-year-old boy who attended Glad Tidings Church; his body exam of the boy lasted up to 45 minutes and involved touching his genitals, which embarrassed the boy, the court heard. 

That victim, too, was kicked out of his home when his family didn't believe him, the judge heard.

Prosecutors also described an incident where a 17-year-old boy was a "human sexuality study," with Gaglardi providing him with pornographic materials for masturbation.

In another case, Gaglardi taught a 13-year-old boy, who was staying at his home on the weekends, how to wash his genitals "properly."

In total, Gaglardi was charged with 25 sex crimes in 2021 following a plea by Coquitlam RCMP a year earlier for victims to come forward.

In September, he was found guilty on 11 counts following a trial.

Crown Counsel said Gaglardi denies the offences and shows no remorse; he is no longer counselling.

During the sentencing hearing, prosecutors referred to R. vs. Friesen, the landmark Supreme Court of Canada case involving sex crimes against children, as well as R. vs. Coban, the precedent-setting case involving the sextortion of Port Coquitlam’s Amanda Todd. 

The sentencing hearing continues.

If you or someone you know is a victim of sexual assault, help is available.

  • In an emergency, call 9-1-1
  • In a crisis, call 1-800-563-0808
  • To report a person under 19 who needs protection to the Ministry of Children and Family Development, call 310-1234 (no area code required)

You can find a full list of resources on the B.C. government’s website.