Arrest of mps: Jacques Chagnon request to be notified

Photo: Jacques Boissinot The canadian Press
The president of the national Assembly, Jacques Chagnon, close friend to the police to advise “systematically” when they proceed to the arrest of the deputies.

The president of the national Assembly, Jacques Chagnon, issues a directive in which he intimate to the police to notify them of “systematically” when they proceed to the arrest of the deputies.


These should not take as example the “methods used” by the Unité permanente anticorruption (UPAC) to pin Guy Ouellette, the ex-president of the Commission des institutions on the 25th of October last — that the ” scheme to do [it] out of the house “.


“[They] show, in my opinion, a flagrant lack of consideration to the location of the Assembly and its members, ” he said in a speech of three quarters of an hour pronounced in the blue Room of the Parliament building.


“As a guardian of the rights and privileges of the Assembly and its members “, Mr. Chagnon ” request that in the future the police [the]inform in a systematic way […] when it comes to the arrest of a member of parliament, and especially if this arrest prevents them from participating in parliamentary work “.


The president of the national Assembly is kept to sommer, once again, the UPAC, and, by ricochet, the Director of criminal and penal prosecutions (DPCP), an “accuse or excuse” with Guy Ouellette. On the other hand, it was pointed out, however, that the uncertainty “could have a detrimental effect” the member for Chomedey in which the” integrity [was] under attack “. “In a political context where the image and the public’s perceptions are of fundamental importance, it is difficult to imagine that a member of parliament in respect of which such charges would be latent to be able to participate in the democratic process without having to pay the political price. This situation, you will agree, would be unfair and deeply unjust “, he said in less than a year of the next general election.


“Understand me well, nobody, nobody now claims that mps are above the law or that they are immune from justice. The deputies did not have immunity in respect of criminal offences, or criminal that they can make as citizens. Nevertheless, to preserve their independence, provide them with to be able to exercise fully and effectively their role as an mp, they must be able to count on certain guarantees that are necessary in the exercise of their functions “, he continued.


Data Protection


The president of the national Assembly said he was offended to learn on Friday, November 3 in an article in le Devoir that UPAC had to perform the extraction of the contents of all the equipment seized at the mna Guy Ouellette — computer, tablet or mobile — without having previously informed.


UPAC indicated then the Duty that she would take care to take note of the information which could, according to her, ” be covered by a potential parliamentary privilege “. “This copy of [data from] all the items it will be placed under seal and deposited with the sheriff of the district : a neutral place “, explained the spokesperson for UPAC, Anne-Frédérick Laurence. If the national Assembly invokes parliamentary privilege, the case will be shown before the courts, she warned, indicating to follow to the letter a memorandum “advised” by the DPCP and “endorsed” by a judge of the Court of Québec.


The articles seized on the 25th of October “must be placed under seal, in order to avoid any violation of the privileges of an mp,” insisted Mr. Chagnon Thursday. A representative of the national Assembly ” must be able to actively participate in this operation [of] separating the documents covered by the privilege, and those who are not “. “Only these last can then be used by the police authorities “, has reiterated the elected.


The commissioner for the fight against corruption, Robert Lafrenière, was held on Thursday to remember to be in dialogue “legal” with the national Assembly, and this, since the search of the computer items ” potentially under parliamentary privilege “. “This collaboration will allow the process to follow its course in respect of parliamentary privilege and of the sound administration of justice,” he said by way of press release.


The grand patron of the UPAC was said to have ” the highest consideration of the function of a member of parliament and the privilege that falls to him, especially when it comes to search, or still, to his arrest.”

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