Conservatives call for emergency meeting after PMO, SNC-Lavalin report

Conservatives call for emergency meeting after PMO, SNC-Lavalin report

Conservatives call for emergency meeting after PMO, SNC-Lavalin report

"At no time did I or my office direct the current or previous attorney-general to make any particular decision in this matter", Mr. Trudeau told reporters on Thursday at a transit-related appearance in Vaughan, Ont.

On the matter of issuing directives to the director of public prosecutions (or "DPP"), the document says: "It is appropriate for the attorney general to consult with cabinet colleagues before exercising his or her powers under the DPP Act in respect of any criminal proceedings, in order to fully assess the public policy considerations relevant to specific prosecutorial decisions".

The Globe reports top officials in the Prime Minister's Office tried to pressure then-Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould to drop criminal prosecution against the company. A spokesperson for the PMO said in a statement that Wilson-Raybould raised the SNC-Lavalin case with Butts, and he told her to speak with Michael Wernick, the clerk of the privy council.

Justin Trudeau calls the story false.

Wilson-Raybould was shuffled out of the justice portfolio last month, with Trudeau naming her veterans affairs minister.

"Even more shocking, the prime minister may have fired her from her role as our country's first Indigenous justice minister and attorney general", said McLeod, the Conservative party's Indigenous Affairs critic.

A week ago, former SNC-Lavalin CEO Pierre Duhaime pleaded guilty to what the Canadian Press described as "a charge of helping a public servant commit breach of trust for his role in a bribery scandal around the construction of a $1.3-billion Montreal hospital". Chief Executive Officer Neil Bruce said in December that the impasse over the case cost the company more than $5 billion in lost contracts.

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer and NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh are calling for an ethics probe into the allegations.

As attorney general, Wilson-Raybould could have become involved in the case against the company by directing federal prosecutors to negotiate a "remediation agreement", a way of holding an organization to account for wrongdoing without a formal finding of guilt.

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Meanwhile, the NDP is also calling for the ethics commissioner to investigate the allegations, as is Ottawa-based ethics watchdog Democracy Watch.

During question period in the House of Commons, Lametti also denied engaging in discussions about SNC-Lavalin before his appointment.

The Official Opposition Leader said the Prime Minister's response Thursday morning was insufficient and scripted. "MPs have a duty to determine what exactly happened here and Justin Trudeau and his office must be forthcoming".

CTV News has asked Jody Wilson-Raybould for comment on the story and her office said she will not be commenting today.

"If he truly wants to clear this up and believes there's been no wrongdoing, he should welcome an investigation from the ethics commissioner". It would also mean the criminal prosecution against the company would not continue.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Veterans Affairs Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould at a swearing in ceremony on January 14, 2019.

Wilson-Raybould did not rise in the House to answer questions. Scheer called for committee hearings into allegations of political influence into SNC-Lavalin's criminal case.

Neither Wilson-Raybould nor SNC-Lavalin has responded to questions from The Canadian Press about the story.

The fact that such directives must be done publicly would seem to constrain a justice minister from doing anything overtly political.

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