Montreal

Judge Michel Déziel should stay in office: Canadian Judicial Council

The Canadian Judicial Council is recommending that Quebec Superior Court Judge Michel Déziel remain on the bench.

Déziel admitted to handling illegal campaign donation during 1997 Blainville municipal election

Quebec Superior Court judge Michel Déziel was appointed November 5, 2003, six years after he is alleged to have been involved in illegal party financing. (Radio-Canada)

The Canadian Judicial Council is recommending that Quebec Superior Court Judge Michel Déziel remain on the bench.

A panel of 20 Council members launched a review after a witness before the Charbonneau Commission alleged Déziel asked a political fixer to launder illegal cash donations for an election campaign.

Gilles Cloutier testified at the inquiry that Déziel, who is currently a sitting judge in Laval, Que., helped commit election fraud nearly 15 years ago while he was a lawyer.

Testifying before the panel, Déziel admitted he handed over more than $30,000 from an engineering firm to a municipal political party during a 1997 campaign, even though he knew corporate donations were illegal. 

"Council agreed with Justice Déziel that this past conduct was inappropriate," the council wrote in a news release.

However, with three members dissenting, Council found that the judge's past action, "when considered against a number of factors, did not undermine public confidence in his abilities to discharge the duties of his judicial office."

The Ministry of Justice will consider the recommendations and make its own decision.

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