Canadian hospitals on high alert due to deadly Chinese coronavirus warnings
Montreal hospitals have announced that they are on heightened alert following the public health departments issuing of a “call for vigilance” regarding the new coronavirus.
The coronavirus, which has infected more than 200 people and killed six since the first outbreak in China, is similar to SARS, which caused a global pandemic.
Snowstorms are wreaking havoc over much of Canada today, with a heavy snowstorm in Quebec, freezing rain and heavy snow in Atlantic Canada, and a similar weather blanketing much of Ontario.
In Quebec, the storm has forced some schools to shut down due to threats of 20 – 30 cm of snow adding to yesterday’s snowfall, according to CBC news. Montreal is expected to get pummeled with 50 cm of snow.
In Ontario, heavy snow is expected between Kitchener and Durham, reducing visibility for drivers using the 401 highway. Ottawa, on the other hand, is expecting temperatures below -30c, after a snowstorm that bought nearly 15 cm of snow.
Canadians have taken to Twitter to rejoice and complain about this wintery weather.
The same alligator that was spotted in Montreal crossing the street last December has made headlines again after it bit a young girl over the weekend.
CTV News reported that the alligator is owned by a company from south of Montreal in Sainte-Julie. The alligator was in the owner’s home when it bit the young girl.
The incident happened on February 1 but police were not notified until February 3 according to Jean-Luc Tremblay of Richelieu-Saint-Laurent regional police force.
The girl did not have to go to the hospital as her injuries were only minor.
The owner of the alligator was fined $250 by the city of Sainte-Julie for having an exotic animal in their home.
Police are still exploring the incident and deciding on whether they will continue with a criminal investigation.
The alligator went viral in December after crossing the street in the Villeray district in Montreal. It had managed to escape while the owners were transporting it to a new location.
A resident of the Hochelaga-Maisonneuve neighbourhood in Montreal has been ordered to keep away from the UQAM campuses while his criminal case is pending. Jean-Claude Rochefort, 71, is an anti-feminist blogger who was charged back in December with inciting hatred towards women according to the Montreal Gazette.
Rochefort was arrested in Montreal by police in December after a professor at UQAM filed a complaint against Rochefort allegedly posted a blog about Marc Lepine, the man behind the infamous Ecole Polytechnique mass shooting in 1989. It was a shooting that killed 14 women and injured 14 more. Just prior to the 30th anniversary of the shooting, Rochefort praised Lepine in a blog most and was consequently arrested.
Quebec Court Judge Alexandre Dalmau was informed that Rochefort wrote most of his blogs in English even though his native tongue is French on Friday. During his bail hearing in December, Rochefort was described by a prosecutor as having written some of the worst examples of inciting hatred. Rochefort was granted bail on Dec. 16 after agreeing to make a $200 deposit and post $2,000 bond. Along with conditions that required Rochefort to cancel any and all internet service providers.
Prosecutor Josian Laplante told reporters on Friday that she requested an additional condition, on behalf of the university that he not be permitted to enter on the campuses of UQAM given some of the references he made in his blog although there is no evidence that he had gone to the campuses any time recently.
“You have to understand that in the articles that were published there were references to a UQAM employee and the university asked that the employee be protected in some way. That is why the Crown and the defence consented to it,” Laplante said.
The case is scheduled to return to court on Feb. 21. Whether or not it will go to a trial will be determined after Laplante and Rochefort’s lawyer meet to discuss the possibility of a settlement. Rochefort has not denied that he was the one who wrote the blogs that led to his arrest. His charge is the wilful promotion of hatred of an identifiable group, between Sept. 1 and Dec. 5 2019, “by communicating statements, other than in private conversation.”
Rochefort was arrested back in 2009 just before the 20th anniversary of the Polytechnique shooting as well. Rochefort was arrested for uttering threats towards women through the use of his website in addition to posting a photo of an armed Lepine. The charge would eventually be dropped in 2010 however months later Rochefort plead guilty to possession of an unauthorized firearm. He was sentenced to two years of probation and 50 hours of community service.
The Crown is is requesting that Sami Bebawi, a former executive at SNC-Lavalin, pay back the money he made through illegal actions.
According to the Montreal Gazette, the total sum Bebawi owes is $28 million which prosecutors want the court to collect by making Bebawi give up $4.2 million in assets and pay the rest of the $24 million fine.
Bebawi was sentenced to 8.5 years in prison after being found guilty of five charges. The 73-year-old was found guilty last month in crimes related to dealings with Libya’s Gadhafi regime.
Over the course of the trial, it was said that during the corruption Bebawi had taken $28 million and moved it to many bank accounts and a family trust.
On Tuesday, prosecutors made it clear at the Montreal courthouse that $4.2 million in assets has been located and they will attempt to have them forfeited. The request has not been contested by the defence.
Included in the assets are bank accounts and property that Bebawi and his family own. There is property in Montreal, St-Lambert and a condo in Florida which the American government sold for US$1.17 million.
The request will most likely be ruled on in March by Superior Court Justice Guy Cournoyer.
Anne-Marie Manoukian, the Crown prosecutor, noted that if the fine is ordered and Bebawi fails to pay it by the deadline, he will possibly receive more prison time.
Bebawi was found guilty of corruption, fraud and laundering after being the executive vice-president at SNC-Lavalin from 2000 to 2006.
Jurors were told that Bebawi was backing a transfer of around $113 million that was distributed to shell companies. The money was then used to give to people who were able to secure deals in Libya.
The guilty verdict is being appealed by Bebawi and he has been freed from detention for the time being.
Part of the appeal argues that wiretap evidence was wrongly allowed by the presiding judge. From the wiretap came recorded conversations from Constantine Kyres—Bebawi’s lawyer at the time. The conversations revealed that Kyres made an offer of $10 million to a different former SNC-Lavalin executive in an attempt to make him change his testimony.
Conditions of Bebawi’s release forbid him from engaging in any communication with twelve other people—many being former SNC-lavalin executives.