Scandal of the MUHC : No stay of proceedings for one of the accused

News 18 December, 2017
  • Michael Nguyen

    Monday, December 18, 2017 15:49

    Monday, December 18, 2017 15:53

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    One of the accused in the corruption scandal of the construction of the MUHC has failed in his attempt to obtain a stay of proceedings because of delays, even if he is waiting for his trial, since almost five years.

    “Exceptional circumstances to justify the duration of the case,” ruled the judge Geneviève Gratton, Monday, at the palais de justice of Montreal.

    Sitting in the hearing room, the laid-back air, Yohann Elbaz has not reacted to the announcement of this decision, which ensures that he will have to stand trial.

    Elbaz, 39 years old, had been arrested in April 2013, in connection with the scandal of the MUHC. According to the police, SNC-Lavalin paid $ 22.5 million in bribes in order to ensure you get the contract for the construction of the Glen campus of the McGill university health Centre.

    The contract was valued at approximately $ 1.3 billion.

    An investigation had been triggered, and the police had stopped several individuals, including the former CEO of SNC-Lavalin Pierre Duhaime and a former executive of the company, Riadh Ben Aïssa. The former boss of the MUHC Arthur Porter had been arrested, but he has since passed away.

    The details of the cause are subject to a publication ban.

    But since the arrests, the folder was too dragged, argued the lawyer Elbaz.

    “Almost 54 months after his arrest, Yohann Elbaz, has no trial date,” complained the criminal lawyer Walid Hijazi in its application for a stay of proceedings finally dismissed.

    The lawyer relied on the famous judgment in Jordan of the supreme Court, which has established last year a limit of time before an accused person on trial. This period is either 18 or 30 months, depending on the cause, with exceptions, among others, depending on the complexity of the case.

    And it is precisely these exceptions that have made it so that the magistrate dismissed the application.

    “This is an especially complex,” she said.

    Elbaz will return to court at a later date, in order that its record may walk until the trial.