Montreal fires 2 city workers after internal inquiry
Thériault, Themens dismissed, Paquette returns to engineer's job
The City of Montreal has fired two of three employees who were suspended last fall after their names came up in testimony at the Charbonneau inquiry into corruption in Quebec's construction industry.
Yves Themens and city engineer François Thériault, along with city engineer Michel Paquette, were named by former construction boss Lino Zambito last October.
Zambito said Themens furnished him with a secret list of companies that were bidding on infrastructure contracts that his construction firm, Infrabec, was also interested in obtaining.
Paquette and Thériault authorized "extras" that inflated the cost of certain projects, Zambito said.
The city suspended all three employees and asked its comptroller-general to investigate the allegations.
That internal investigation has uncovered a long list irregularities involving either Thériault or Themens.
- submitting unjustified expenses.
- increasing the supply of unnecessary materials.
- obtaining payment from the city for work without supporting documents.
- establishing inappropriately cozy relationships with construction entrepreneurs.
- accepting gifts or bribes from entrepreneurs.
The third employee, Michel Paquette, has been allowed to return to work in the city's infrastructure department in light of new information gathered during the city's investigation, the details of which have not been released.
A fourth employee, Gilles Vézina, remains suspended without pay and has tendered his resignation, effective March 1.