The wait is almost over for Nathalie Normandeau and his co-defendants. The hearing of the motion in arrest procedures, type Jordan, which was delayed because of the COVID-19, will finally take place in the week of 20 July.
Pandemic requires, in this application, to be debated from the 16th of march had been postponed indefinitely due to the inability to set a date with certainty in the context of the health crisis.
Last April 15, the parties had agreed to meet again on 22 June to take stock of the situation and attempt to set a new date for the hearing.
However, the lawyers have finally met a few days earlier than planned, on Thursday morning, due to the filing of a request of the Office of independent investigations (EIB), which has requested and obtained, without opposition, of the lawyers of the media – the extension of an order of non-publication until September to survey material collected in the framework of the project the Oath (still in course) on the leak of evidence to the UPAC in the media.
The investigation will drag on until December
This survey, whose conclusions are crucial and expected impatiently by the prosecutors of Ms. Normandeau and his five co-accused (because they expect to be able to demonstrate the involvement of senior officers of UPAC in the leaks to media), was moving slowly prior to the crisis, as was revealed in The Journal last February.
In all likelihood, the investigators will not have finished, at best, before the month of December next, a-t-on learned, which may have an impact on the trial Normandeau. The lawyer of Marc-Yvan Côté, Me Jacques Larochelle, has even mentioned the possibility of having to reconvene the journalist Marie-Maude Denis before the court to ask him to reveal his sources, if the EIB is slow to complete its work.
Impacts of the pandemic
The investigation of the EIB has been slowed by the health crisis, confirms the investigator Michel Doyon in a new sworn declaration in which the parties have debated at length on Thursday.
The investigation team anticipates the resumption of its meetings “in the summer,” says Michel Doyon, who should be called to the bar in July in the framework of the hearing of the motion, Jordan. Three days have been blocked in the calendar, from 21 to 23 July, at the palace of justice of Quebec. This morning, some of the lawyers were present in person before the judge André Perreault, while others have participated in the hearing in a virtual way.
Recall that the former deputy premier Nathalie Normandeau is facing charges of breach of trust, fraud against the government and corruption in municipal affairs. The case is related to campaign contributions illegal would have been paid to facilitate the award of government contracts between 2005 and 2010.
His five co-accused (Marc-Yvan Côté, Bruno Lortie, France Michaud, François Roussy and Mario Martel) have attached their name at the request of Jordan, the second for “unreasonable delay” that needs to be heard since their arrest by UPAC, there are more than four years, on the same day as the tabling of the provincial budget this year.