Canada's ethics commissioner launches investigation against Prime Minister's office

Feb 11 2019, 7:30 pm

An investigation into whether Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s office tried to provide Quebec-based construction and engineering company SNC-Lavalin with a reduced punishment stemming from serious corruption charges has begun today.

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The investigation was launched after Canada’s Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner, Mario Dion, agreed to the investigation request from the federal NDP.

It comes after a report by The Globe and Mail last week, which said Trudeau tried to persuade Canada’s Attorney General to make a deal with prosecutors in a fraud case against the construction and engineering company based in Quebec.

Under the Conflict of Interest Act, a member of the government is prohibited from giving “preferential treatment to any person or organization based on the identity of the person or organization.”

In 2016, the Liberal Party of Canada was forced to return over $100,000 in illegal donations they received from SNC-Lavalin’s political slush fund, and the NDP has requested the Ethics Commissioner to look into whether Trudeau was a recipient of illegal donations, according to a release.