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OTTAWA, Ontario (LifeSiteNews) –– The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) now deny that they are looking into whether Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his cabinet, about four years ago, committed obstruction of justice concerning a bribery scandal involving the large Canadian engineering firm SNC-Lavalin.  

On Monday, the non-profit advocacy group Democracy Watch said it got a response to an Access to Information Act (ATIA) request filed by its co-founder Duff Conacher, with the RCMP back in July of 2022, about the SNC-Lavalin affair and Trudeau. The advocacy group says the response confirmed there is an ongoing investigation into the matter.  

However, after Democracy Watch released the letter, the RCMP later in the day issued a statement denying that there is an ongoing investigation.

“In response to numerous media reports, the RCMP can confirm it is not investigating allegations of political interference in the trial of SNC Lavalin,” tweeted the RCMP Monday.  

According to Democracy Watch, the RCMP response letter, dated May 25, 2023, “confirms it is investigating the allegation that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, former Finance Minister Bill Morneau, some members of their staff, and former Clerk of the Privy Council Michael Wernick, obstructed justice by pressuring then-Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould to stop the prosecution of SNC-Lavalin in 2018.”  

The response letter is 96-pages long but contains 86-pages which are fully redacted, as it was stated that the matter is “currently under investigation.”  

Conacher’s original Access to Information to the RCMP had read, “As it did in February 2021 in a letter to the RCMP, Democracy Watch again requests records with regard into all decisions made concerning the examination and any subsequent investigations that have been undertaken, and all decisions concerning prosecuting anyone involved in the situation of the allegation that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, former finance minister Bill Morneau, some members of their staff, and former Clerk of the Privy Council Michael Wernick obstructed justice by pressing then-attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould to stop the prosecution of SNC-Lavalin.” 

In addition to the tweet, the RCMP also issued a broader statement to the media on Monday, which Democracy Watch posted on its website.  

“The RCMP is not investigating allegations of political interference in the exercise of prosecutorial discretion to secure a remediation agreement for SNC-Lavalin. The statement, in a May 2023 Access to Information Release was sent using information available at the time,” said the RCMP Media Relations and Communications team. 

“The RCMP’s Sensitive and International Investigations unit conducted an assessment pertaining to these allegations. As part of that review the RCMP spoke with and collected information from a variety of sources, and examined the matter in the most thorough, objective, and professional manner. After a comprehensive and impartial assessment of all available information, the RCMP determined that there was insufficient evidence to substantiate a criminal offence and the file was concluded.” 

The RCMP then noted that the “conclusion of that file was communicated to the original complainant in a letter in January 2023 and was also to be released via several Access to Information Requests received.” 

Jody Wilson-Raybould was Trudeau’s former attorney general of Canada. Back in 2019, she contended that both Trudeau and his top Liberal officials had inappropriately applied pressure to her for four months, to directly intervene in the criminal prosecution of Montreal-based global engineering firm SNC-Lavalin, relating to a scandal involving corruption and bribery charges connected to government contracts it once had in Libya.  

Wilson-Raybould testified in early 2019 to Canada’s justice committee that she believed she was moved from her then-justice cabinet posting to veterans’ affairs due to the fact she did not grant a request from SNC-Lavalin for a deferred prosecution agreement, rather than a criminal trial.   

Of note is that a criminal conviction would have banned the company from getting any government contracts for 10 years.  

As for Trudeau, yesterday his cabinet flat out denied it was being investigated by the RCMP.  

A little less than four years ago, Trudeau was found to have broken the federal ethics laws, or Section 9 of the Conflict-of-Interest Act, for his role in pressuring Wilson-Raybould.  

Before this week, the last time the RCMP made a public comment regarding the SNC-Lavalin affair was in 2019 when a spokesperson told the CBC that police were “examining this matter carefully” and would “take any appropriate actions as required.”  

This statement came only days after Trudeau was found to have broken federal ethics laws.  

Democracy Watch calls RCMP statementweirdly vague

Democracy Watch said in a new statement posted Monday that the “RCMP’s statement is weirdly vague.” 

“The May 25, 2023 RCMP letter says they were investigating, and redacted 86 pages of a because they were investigating, but actually that decision to end the investigation was made in January 2023 and communicated to an unknown original complainant but not to anyone else? But it was supposed to have been communicated to everyone who filed an access-to-information request?” noted Democracy Watch.  

“The decision was not even communicated to the RCMP Access to Information unit staff for 5 months and, as a result, they sent the letter to Democracy Watch dated May 25, 2023 that said the matter was currently under investigation.”  

According to Democracy Watch, the RCMP’s statement raises even “more questions” than the May 25 letter brought up.  

“The RCMP’s story doesn’t add up because they are contradicting themselves about when the allegations were being investigated, and when decisions were made to end the investigation,” noted Democracy Watch. 

“If the investigation ended in January 2023, then why did the RCMP refuse to disclose 86 pages of their investigation documents just a few weeks ago because, they said, the allegations were still under investigation?”  

Democracy Watch said that to “clear up this matter,” the RCMP must answer “those” questions and fully disclose the 86 redacted pages.  

On February 12, 2019, Wilson-Raybould resigned from her veterans’ affairs posting, and Treasury Board president Jane Philpott quit in March of the same year. They both cited a lack of confidence in the Liberal government’s handling of the scandal.   

Then, in April 2019, Trudeau turfed both Wilson-Raybould and Philpott from his caucus, meaning they were no longer part of the Liberal Party.