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Ex-Liberal candidate Andrew Olivier cross-examined in Sudbury byelection trial

The bribery trial for prominent Sudbury businessman Gerry Lougheed and former top Liberal official Pat Sorbara continues.

2nd day of trial for Liberals Gerry Lougheed and Pat Sorbara hears testimony of man who started it all

Gerry Lougheed Jr. leaves court on the first day of his bribery trial in Sudbury. (Yvon Theriault/ Radio-Canada CBC)

The man who set off the Sudbury, Ont., provincial byelection scandal and the bribery investigation that followed three years ago faced a full day of questioning by defence lawyers Friday.

Andrew Olivier ran for the Liberals in the 2014 election and then accused party officials Pat Sorbara and Gerry Lougheed Jr. of bribing him not to run in the 2015 byelection.

Lougheed's lawyer Michael Lacy questioned him on his belief in the party holding a "democratic" open nomination process, while some of his Sudbury supporters were lobbying Liberal brass in Toronto to appoint Olivier as the candidate.

"I knew he was lobbying for me to be the candidate, but for me to be appointed, I can't be sure," Olivier testified.

Andrew Olivier, who ran for the Liberals in 2014 and lost by only 1,000 votes, said he was asked to step aside in the 2015 byelection in favour of Glenn Thibeault, then an MP with the New Democrats. (Yvon Theriault/ Radio-Canada CBC)

The court also saw text messages between Olivier and Glenn Thibeault, the then Sudbury New Democrat MP who defected to the Ontario Liberals to run in the byelection.

Olivier texted: "I'll be holding off on the he said she said bs. Enough poison in the media as it is."

Thibeault replied: "I want to make sure that we're good. Once politics is done, friends are way more important."

The trial resumes next week, with several high profile witnesses expected to testify, including Premier Kathleen Wynne on Sept. 13.