Ethics commissioner Mary Dawson concluded in February that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau did not contravene the Conflict of Interest Act when he participated in two fundraising events last year that were the subject of opposition complaints.

The Conservatives and New Democrats had asked Dawson to investigate Trudeau's participation in those events in December.

In a response to interim Conservative Leader Rona Ambrose that was dated Feb. 14 and first obtained by the National Post, Dawson wrote that she followed up with the prime minister to ask about his interactions with some of the attendees at the fundraisers

"After carefully reviewing the information and documents provided by Mr. Trudeau in response to my request, I have found no reason to believe that Mr. Trudeau contravened sections 7 or 16 of the act in relation to the fundraisers." Dawson wrote.

The ethics commissioner said there was no information before her that Trudeau had personally solicited funds in relation to either event, nor that he or his staff had had any dealings with the individuals in question after the events.

Dawson's response was not publicized, though Liberal House leader Bardish Chagger alluded to a determination by the ethics commissioner in the House of Commons during question period Feb. 23.

New legislation planned

The Liberal government announced in January that it intends to introduce new legislation to cover fundraising activities.

Earlier this month, the Liberal Party began publicly reporting fundraising events that involve cabinet ministers.

"With respect to previous fundraising activity, the conflict of interest and ethics commissioner has said that no rules were broken," Cameron Ahmad, a spokesperson for the prime minister, said in a statement.

"That being said, we recognize that we can do more to enhance openness and transparency in the fundraising system for cabinet ministers, party leaders, and leadership candidates by opening up our events to the media and the public." 

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