Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Generous donations from executives of SNC-Lavalin's Conservative Party

This is a translation of the La Presse article of May 9, 2012  by Vincent Larouche found here:

In an outburst that their company describes as strictly personal, a dozen leaders of SNC-Lavalin and their spouses conducted blitz operations funding for the Conservatives inQuebec ridings lost in advance. At the same time, beneficiaries have redistributedwealth to the constituencies of elected members as Christian Paradis, Minister of Public Works.

Riadh Ben Aïssa

One name stands out among donors in Quebec, Ontario and Alberta: the Riadh Ben Aissa, former Vice-President, SNC-Lavalin, known for its links with the Gaddafi regime in Libya. Mr. Ben Aissa was arrested in Switzerland in mid-April for corruption and money laundering after he left the engineering firm.The ten leaders of SNC-Lavalin identified by La Presse has paid $ 25 000 in two conservative riding associations without any prospect of victory in 2009: Laurier-Sainte-Marie in Montreal, and Portneuf-Jacques-Cartier, Quebec .In the first, former stronghold of Gilles Duceppe, the Conservatives have completed the fourth and fifth the last two elections. As to the second, held by the Independent Andre Arthur at the time, the Conservatives had there not even a candidate.The low penetration of the party of Stephen Harper in these districts has not prevented from raising lots of money. The Conservative association for Laurier-Sainte-Marie has raised nearly $ 300 000 in 2009.The Bloc Quebecois, which then seemed unbeatable in that district, there were only collected $ 78 000, of which $ 50 000 from other bodies of the party.In Portneuf-Jacques-Cartier, the Conservative Party (CCP) had amassed $ 61 000 the same year.Are identicalRiadh Ben Aissa addition, the SNC-Lavalin leaders who participated in financing activities include conservative Michael Novak, Vice President, Aboriginal Affairs and International, Patrick Lamarre, Executive Vice President Energy and Gilles Laramee, Chief Operating Officer Financial.Several executives gave to both conservative associations, substantially simultaneously.The amounts are similar to the penny: $ 666.66 or $ 733.33 in Laurier-Sainte-Marie and $ 1100 or $ 1000 in Portneuf-Jacques-Cartier. We tried to find out if it was the entry price of an activity, but nobody could confirm this.In total, La Presse scored donations $ 9400 in Laurier-Sainte-Marie and $ 14 100 in Portneuf-Jacques-Cartier for this group of leaders in 2009.The association for Laurier-Sainte-Marie turned a lot of money to districts of Conservative MPs that year. Transfer its largest by far is a payment of $ 30 000 to the Conservative association of Mégantic-Maple, riding Christian Paradis, Minister of Public Works.The Conservative association of Portneuf-Jacques-Cartier in turn transferred smaller amounts to the districts of Charlesbourg ($ 2000) and Louis-Hébert ($ 5,000). She also transfers $ 18 000 the following year.Asked about this, the spokesman of SNC-Lavalin, Leslie Quinton, ensures that the company is committed to the electoral law. "It is impossible to comment on the donations made by individuals as they have the right to give to causes they choose," says she.She stressed that the values ​​statement of the firm encourages employees to be "active in their community."Ladle, according to NPDThe New Democratic Party (NDP) calls this the "shady"."It was an engineering firm that benefits from government contracts, and where people suddenly want to give large sums. This has every appearance of a concerted action. This is troubling. Do we expect a return elevator? "Asks the MP Alexandre Boulerice.Mr. Boulerice is the case even more disturbing that Riadh Ben Aissa, known for "its contracts with the dictatorship in Libya," appears in the group. It also highlights the significant transfers of funds to the constituency of Christian Paradis, who was Minister of Public Works and responsible for major public contracts."It blurs a little tracks. It does not have the names of the people of SNC-Lavalin in donors of Mr. Paradis, was only a notice of transfer to another Conservative association. It is not illegal, but it takes one more step to check where the money comes from, "he said.The press officer of Christian Paradis, Harper's political lieutenant in Quebec, had little to say on the matter.'The Minister follows the rules of political party funding to the letter and any suggestion otherwise is false and defamatory. The Minister is not aware of donations to other counties, "she said._____________________________________Policy and engineering consultingAt both the provincial and federal law prohibits corporations from contributing to political parties or to use people to do it.In 2009, Canadian law fixed at $ 1,100 maximum annual contribution of a citizen to a federal party (the limit has been indexed to $ 1,200 this year).At the provincial level, the engineering consulting firms have had to defend himself against allegations of political financing in disguise, in the wake of the report Duchesneau and arrests of the squad Hammer.A former consultant to the firm Roche has even told the CBC he had found hundreds of nominees for political financing.

This CBC report from Mar. 20, 2013 further elaborates on the Conservative Party's connection to SNC Lavalin.  
SNC-Lavalin staff donated $15K to Conservative nominee

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