Jaffer's friends in low places

Boozy dinner with dodgy business associates preceded the former MP's arrest

In a lengthy investigative piece, the Toronto Star sheds light on the murky events that led to Rahim Jaffer’s arrest for speeding, drunk driving and cocaine possession in Caledon last September. The evening reportedly began at a downtown Toronto steakhouse, where Jaffer was dining with Nazim Gillani, as well as some business associates, and “three busty hookers.” Gillani, an allegedly dodgy businessman with a penchant for strip clubs, is the CEO of International Strategic Investments, which boasts of its ability to secure government grants for companies among other services. The morning after the dinner, Gillani bragged of having done just that in an email to his fellow diners: “Mr. Jaffer has opened up the Prime Minister’s office to us,” he wrote, seemingly unaware Jaffer hadn’t emerged from a police holding cell until 6 that morning. Jaffer had himself told those in attendance he “can get [government money], no problem” and that he has “access to a green fund.” Since then, Gillani and some of his business associates have been charged with fraud in connection with the transfer of $1.5 million from the Rona retail chain to a dummy account in Hong Kong. Those close to Gillani have speculated that Jaffer’s unusually good deal on the drug and drunk driving charges that followed the boozy dinner (they were dropped in exchange for a guilty plea to a charge of careless driving) involved Jaffer agreeing to testify against Gillani.

Toronto Star

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