#LavScam latest: illegal SNC donations to the LPC – and to Ignatieff, Dion, Rae and Trudeau’s candidate, Kennedy
Stunning, kick-ass scoop by CBC, this week. (Oh, and for those conservative types who continually rail about how the CBC is part of a vast pro-Liberal conspiracy? Read this story before you pop off on social media, next time.)
All of the story is here. Key highlights here:
A confidential document sent to the Liberal Party of Canada in 2016, and obtained by CBC/Radio-Canada, reveals how top officials at the embattled engineering firm SNC-Lavalin were named in a scheme to illegally influence Canadian elections.
The list of names, compiled in 2016 by federal investigators probing political party donations and leaked to CBC’s The Fifth Estate and Radio-Canada’s Enquête, raises new questions about an agreement by the Commissioner of Canada Elections not to prosecute the company.
The federal Liberals were sent the list in a letter marked “confidential” from the Commissioner of Canada Elections — the investigative branch of Elections Canada — on Aug. 5, 2016. But for nearly three years, neither Elections Canada nor the Liberal Party shared that information publicly.
The investigation reveals that over a period of more than five years between 2004 and 2009, 18 former SNC-Lavalin employees, directors and some spouses contributed nearly $110,000 to the federal Liberals, including to four party leadership campaigns and four riding associations in Quebec.
According to the letter, the investigation found that SNC-Lavalin reimbursed all of those individual donations — a practice forbidden under the Canada Elections Act.
And, look! Another DPA-style deal that favoured these sleazebags:
The illicit SNC-Lavalin operation went undetected for nearly a decade. Despite the evidence collected by investigators, the Commissioner of Canada Elections decided not to bring charges against the company, which is headquartered in Montreal but operates around the world.
“We know that the decisions to take part in this scheme took place at the very highest levels of SNC-Lavalin,” said Ayotte. “‘[It] seems to all suggest to me that there should have been a prosecution.”
SNC-Lavalin avoided charges by signing what is known as a “compliance agreement” in 2016 with the Commissioner of Canada Elections after promising not to break the law in the future.
The Liberal Party repeatedly refused to provide the names of those involved when asked by reporters for CBC/Radio-Canada…in his letter to the Liberal Party, the Commissioner of Canada Elections stated that all those donations listed were made, indirectly, by SNC-Lavalin itself. The commissioner stated that the SNC-Lavalin contributions were “ineligible” — meaning they violated the law — and had to be paid back.
The Liberal Party’s revenue chair, Stephen Bronfman, did not return voice messages left by CBC/Radio-Canada. Party spokesman Braeden Caley wrote in an email that “The Liberal Party of Canada fully complies with the Canada Elections Act and all Elections Canada regulations for fundraising and donations and expects all people donating to our party to do so lawfully and to follow the same rules.”