Many words have been tossed around to describe the allegations that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s office pressured former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould in the SNC-Lavalin affair: bombshell, shocking, explosive, inappropriate.
But one word could take this scandal from a House of Commons committee room to a courtroom: illegal.
“Neither opinion settles the matter,” said Ottawa-based defence lawyer Michael Spratt. “It’s not clearly not obstruction.”
According to the Criminal Code, obstructing justice covers “everyone who wilfully attempts in any manner … to obstruct, pervert or defeat the course of justice.”
In her testimony, Wilson-Raybould said she faced intense political pressure and veiled threats related to the SNC-Lavalin affair, and was warned directly by Trudeau about the negative consequences if the company faced prosecution. SNC-Lavalin was facing corruption charges for contracts in Libya and was lobbying for a remediation agreement as an alternative to criminal prosecution.
Spratt said he doesn’t think the case is a “slam dunk,” for police and prosecutors, but “it’s starting to sound a lot like obstruction.”
Read Catharine Tunney’s full story: CBC News