Bellemare admits no independent proof of corruption -

Bellemare admits no independent proof of corruption

Former justice minister testifies for a second day at commission on judicial nominations


On Monday, former Quebec justice minister Marc Bellemare told a commission looking into government corruption regarding judicial nominations that premier Jean Charest told him to appoint three specific people to the bench. Bellemare says Charest told him that “If [Liberal fundraiser Franco Fava] tells you to name [Michel] Simard and [Marc] Bisson, then name them.” On Tuesday Bellemare admitted to the commission he has no independent proof and no notes. “Maybe there are people who at the time were aware of this and could confirm it to you,” he said, referring to his former deputy minister Michel Lalande, among others. “But I don’t have documents, or audio or video of that.” Bellemare said at one point that he took notes, but destroyed them in March. In an apparent contradiction, he later said he doesn’t take notes because he “has a good memory.” Yesterday, Bellemare retracted his accusations that former MNA Norman MacMillan and former labour minister Michel Despres pressured him to name certain people to the bench. Charest has dismissed Bellemare’s allegations.

Montreal Gazette

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Bellemare admits no independent proof of corruption

  1. And Teflon Charest lives on… Is there any Canadian politician in recent memory that has had such good luck?

    • It's not over just yet buddy!

  2. What a nasty business politics is. I thought these things happen in third world countries only. Hmm, who to believe? No matter the result, damage has already been done. I do believe that there is a grain of truth to these allegations, how much? Is something that needs to be investigated, otherwise, the public's cynicism towards authority, judicial process , and politics will spread and leads to breakdown of our society. What a cancer!

  3. " Bellemare admits no independent proof of corruption"

    Then he should have kept his mouth shut. I may not have any respect for Charest but there's a higher moral here. One should not have the right to impugn another's reputation without proof to back it up. That's maybe more serious than the alleged corruption. No wonder we have trouble finding good man and women going into politics.

    • Well actually, the latest allegation is precisely that
      the premier asked Bellemare to keep his mouth shut!

      If any of these are true, it undermines the legitimacy of appointments to the Bench in Quebec.
      That's not to say that the appointed candidates aren't qualified. But if they are prefered solely
      on the basis they or their entourage made substantial political donations to the Liberal Party
      of Quebec, and that in turn fundraisers are able to pressure the Attorney General to appoint
      them, then there is indeed cause for concern.

  4. Whether or not former Quebec justice minister Marc Bellemare's allegations are true that a fundraiser for the provincial Liberal Party had influence over the appointment of judges, the situation and other recent Quebec ethics scandals point to the need for key democratic reforms.

    The annual individual donation limit should be lowered to $500; disclosure of more details about donors and fundraisers and gifts should be required, and; per-vote public funding for parties and candidates should be increased.

    Politicians, their staff and decision-making public officials in the provincial and municipal governments should be required to disclose the identity of everyone who lobbies them in an organized way.

    And everyone who participates in organized lobbying should be prohibited from helping in any significant way with fundraising and the campaigns of candidates and parties.

    If these changes are made, the ability of anyone to have undue influence over any Quebec politician or public official will be greatly reduced.

    Hope this helps, and for details go to:

    Duff Conacher, Coordinator
    Democracy Watch