#LavScam latest: former SNC exec found guilty

Among other things, this verdict suggests some of us (Jody Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott in particular) were right when we said that crimes had indeed taken place – and that no politicians should be interfering in the resulting trials.

I wonder what they’re thinking in PMO right now? Do they ever say: “Hey, maybe we were wrong to do what we did.”

Kind of doubt it.

Former SNC-Lavalin executive vice-president Sami Bebawi has been found guilty on all counts at his fraud and corruption trial.

He will remain free until sentencing.

Bebawi, 73, was on trial over the last six weeks at the Montreal courthouse. The jury had been deliberating since Thursday.

Serving as the firm’s executive vice-president from 2000 to 2006, Bebawi faced five charges in all: fraud, bribing a foreign public official — former dictator Moammar Gadhafi’s son, Saadi Gadhafi — laundering the proceeds of crime, and two counts of possessing property obtained by crime.

Throughout the trial, the Crown positioned Bebawi as the man behind what it described as SNC-Lavalin’s “business model” in Libya: paying millions in kickbacks and bribes to keep obtaining lucrative contracts.

“The company adopted an unusual, unlawful and dishonest practice,” Crown prosecutor Anne-Marie Manoukian told jurors in her closing arguments, “by artificially inflating the prices of contracts, paying bribes and misappropriating money for personal gain.”

Scheer by the Numbers

This tweet has been retweeted, favourited or seen tens of thousands of times.

Oh, and trying to fire Dustin van Vugt, perhaps the most-liked guy in his entire party? Really stupid.

BREAKING: Andrew Scheer resigns

Wow.  Justin Trudeau’s life has just become more complicated.

From the Globe:

Andrew Scheer has decided to resign as Conservative leader after a disappointing election loss and facing internal party divisions over his ability to lead the party, sources say.

Mr. Scheer called a special caucus meeting Thursday morning where he announced he was stepping down.

The decision comes as former Conservative cabinet minister John Baird tabled a highly critical report on the party’s election campaign to Mr. Scheer’s office on Wednesday.



The Trudeau Liberals lose

Politics is all about symbols. And, this week, the federal government was defeated, symbolically.

Canadians, and the Opposition, are deeply dissatisfied with the government’s approach to China. Two Canadians are still being held hostage by the Chinese; the Chinese government has slapped trade bans on key Canadian imports, like canola and beef; and we’ve been caught in the middle of a seemingly endless US-China extradition spat.

This week, all of that led to the Trudeau Liberals being embarrassed in the House of Commons. The government wasn’t defeated – but it was humiliated.

Governing like you have a majority, when you have a minority, is dangerous.  Just ask this guy.

John Ivison has more, here.