Superior court ruling: Quebec doesn't have to pay Jean Charest $700,000 for abuse of process

Superior court ruling: Quebec doesn't have to pay Jean Charest $700,000 for abuse of process

Quebec will not have to pay Jean Charest more than $700,000, the Supreme Court ruled in a case in which the former premier sued the state of Quebec for abuse of procedures over leaks at UPAC.

The former Liberal prime minister won the first round of a lawsuit against the Quebec government for violating his privacy, according to documents from the Permanent Anti-Corruption Unit (UPAC) from April 2017 released by Our Intelligence Unit.

As part of an investigation into the links between political funding and the awarding of public contracts, Mr. The information was gathered as part of a police surveillance of Charest and former Liberal financier Mark Pbew.

Our colleagues from the Bureau of Investigation remarkably got their hands on a file drawn up by UPAC on Jean Charest, a list of his foreign travels and a request to release his passport.

The investigation has since concluded and no chargesheet has been filed.

At the end of the first trial, Quebec was ordered to pay $385,000 for disclosing Jean Charest's personal information. However, UPAC has refused to apologize for its conduct in the matter.

After this first victory, Jean Charest is now demanding an additional $717,000, claiming that the Attorney General of Quebec (PGQ) committed malpractice in the handling of the case before the court.


At his request Mr. His lawyers' team filed two counter-responses to Charest's arguments, and asserted that Quebec had delayed providing him with the documents.

Judge Gregory Moore dismissed all claims in a ruling issued last Tuesday. The former prime minister now has 30 days to appeal the case.

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So, while Jean Charest points out that UPAC did not take steps to prevent an employee from transferring documents from the outside, Judge Moore points out that the author of the leak has not yet been arrested and an investigation has not begun. 2018 is still going on.

So it is impossible to know how the documents went. “Mr. Charest concluded that UPAC did not have adequate security measures in place to protect his personal information. Montreal Journal And because UPAC admitted that the leak was domestic,” writes Judge Moore.

Jean Charest also confirmed that Quebec waited until the end of the investigation to reveal that UPAC “refuses to be subject to laws protecting personal information collected as part of its criminal investigations.”

The judge this time affirmed that this was a “misinterpretation” of the Attorney General's statements, which argued that UPAC had the right to share information with its members and certain ministries.

Time limit

The Superior Court judge noted that Jean Charest had requested numerous new documents before the trial, citing Quebec's alleged delay in sending certain documents.

“PGQ admits that, despite the volume of new documents, during the management conference held on September 16, it did not request an adjournment of the hearing, which was to begin in ten days,” the judge notes.

The timeline, he adds, “proves that PGQ is not taking an unreasonable amount of time.”

At the time of publication, Jean Charest had not responded to our request for comment.

In Quebec, the justice minister's office declined to comment on the matter.

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A story of ten years

  • April 2014: UPAC opens an investigation into Machuer over allegations of illegal funding of the Liberal Party of Quebec (PLQ).
  • April 2017: Our investigative unit uncovers a number of documents demonstrating the extent of police surveillance of former Prime Minister Jean Charest.
  • February 2022: UPAC closes the Machurer investigation without pressing charges related to funding the PLQ.
  • April 2023: The Quebec government is forced by the Quebec government to pay $385,000 for invading Jean Charest's privacy after leaking personal information.
  • April 2024: Jean Charest loses his second case against the State of Quebec, where he claimed more than $700,000 in abuse of process.

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