The RCMP have confirmed they are investigating Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for obstruction of justice for the allegation he pressured the former Attorney General, Jody Wilson-Raybould, to stop prosecuting SNC Lavalin.
The SNC-Lavalin affair was a political scandal that emerged in early 2019 after it was revealed that Trudeau put pressure on then-Attorney General Wilson-Raybould to stop prosecuting SNC-Lavalin, an engineering company found to have bribed both Canadian and Libyan officials.
The non-profit organization Democracy Watch filed an Access to Information Act (ATIA) last year, and released the response it received from the RCMP on Monday.
“Attached to the response letter is a 96-page document with 86 pages fully redacted because ‘this matter is currently under investigation,’” Democracy Watch stated.
The RCMP not only confirmed they are investigating Trudeau, but also former Finance Minister Bill Morneau and other government officials.
It’s the first time the RCMP has confirmed they are officially investigating the allegations against the PM.
After Wilson-Raybould made the allegations, she later appeared before the House of Commons Justice Committee, saying that she “experienced a consistent and sustained effort by many people within the government to seek to politically interfere in the exercise of prosecutorial discretion in my role as the attorney general of Canada in an inappropriate effort to secure a deferred prosecution agreement [DPA] with SNC-Lavalin.”
Among these people was Trudeau, who Wilson-Raybould says tried to influence her decision and convince her not to pursue action against the engineering giant.
Trudeau ultimately fired Wilson-Raybould from her position as Attorney General after she refused to succumb to the pressure.
Trudeau denied these allegations, but then-ethics commissioner Mario Dion disagreed with the PM.
Dion said that Trudeau engaged in a “flagrant attempt to influence” Wilson-Raybould to further “SNC-Lavalin’s private interests” and that Trudeau and his office abused their position to “circumvent, undermine, and ultimately attempt to discredit” her claims.
Following Dion’s report, Trudeau said, “We recognize the way that this happened shouldn’t have happened. I take responsibility for the mistakes that I made.”
“Where I disagree with the commissioner is where he says that any contact with the attorney general on this issue was improper,” the Prime Minister said.