Four members of the Permanent Anti-Corruption Unit (UPAC), including the organization's number two, are suspected of having committed criminal acts as part of the investigation into the ex-mayor of Terrebonne Jean-Marc Robitaille, whose trial aborted last October.
Anti-Corruption Commissioner Frédérick Gaudreau announced Thursday afternoon that he had “transmitted allegations of criminal acts” to the Minister of Public Security regarding several of the employees.
According to our information, Associate Commissioner for Investigations Sylvain Baillargeon and Officer Janick Lacoursière are among the suspected police officers. They had already been assigned to administrative tasks last November.
Both had been blamed on October 18 in a decision by Judge Nancy McKenna, for having concealed information on an important witness of the Crown during the legal proceedings against Mr. Robitaille.
The judge therefore ordered a stay of proceedings against Mr. Robitaille, his former chief of staff Daniel Bélec, the former city manager Luc Papillon and contractor Normand Trudel, who were facing corruption charges.
Following this decision, the Anti-Corruption Commissioner sought an opinion from the Director of Criminal and Penal Prosecutions (DPCP) regarding the conduct of its employees .
He received this notice in the last few days and then alerted the Minister, we were able to learn.
It is the Bureau of Independent Investigations (BEI) that will lead the criminal investigation into the four UPAC employees. The latter are not currently the subject of any formal charges, but will remain assigned to administrative tasks and will no longer take part in police operations until the conclusion of the work of the BEI.
Joint Thursday, Mathieu Galarneau, spokesperson for UPAC, recalled that retired judge Robert Pidgeon had been appointed last December to analyze the process for processing and managing complaints at UPAC.
“This work is still in progress. [Judge Pidgeon] will have all the powers and the time necessary to provide avenues for improvement in the processing of denunciations,” said Mr. Galarneau.
This is not the first time that the BEI is called upon to look into the conduct of UPAC police officers. The organization is still conducting the highly publicized Oath Inquiry into how investigations were conducted during the time of former Commissioner Robert Lafrenière.