Quebec is about to become a dangerous province for men
The Quebec government has decided to establish a committee of “experts” to discuss the possibility of creating a special tribunal for allegations or sexual or domestic violence. Minister of Justice Sonia LeBel cited a lack of confidence in the legal system as the justification for this committee but says that reversing the burden of proof for the accused is not on the table.
LeBel’s office has not replied to The Post Millennial’s request to discover the names of the 13 people selected to sit on the committee, though actress Patricia Tulasne has announced herself as one of the members of the panel. Tulasne hardly qualifies as an expert.
Spearheading a class action lawsuit against Gilbert Rozon, founder of the Just For Laughs festival, Tulasne’s criminal complaint was declined by prosecutors last December. She denounced the criminal justice system, saying “the burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt is almost impossible!”
Other committee members are variously reported to be a former judge, a law professor, a social worker, and front line victim support workers. Thus far, LeBel’s recurring use of the word “victim” does not bode well for maintaining a presumption of innocence.
The choice to take a new approach to sexual assault trials is curiously timed. New federal changes were just passed by the Senate in December 2018 that, among other things, now grant complainants standing in applications to admit any evidence of a sexual nature. Nova Scotia courts have since ruled that the complainants are entitled to free legal representation in those hearings.
Bill C-51, which included dramatic and dangerous changes to rules of evidence in sexual assault trials, has barely had time to stretch its legs and yet Quebec is taking dramatic steps to go even further over the precipice toward unfair hearings. One type of person notably missing from LeBel’s committee so far is an expert on wrongful convictions.
The question of who qualifies as an “expert” has yet to be answered though, presumably, the members of the committee will be compensated for their time with government funding. It is possible that, like Patricia Tulasne, these experts are mostly advocates for “victims” and a year will be spent debating how to get more convictions at the expense of fair trials.
Parti Québécois politician Véronique Hivon has been pushing for these special tribunals claiming the #MeToo movement has shown that “victims” are more comfortable going to the media instead of making a formal report. Neither Hivon nor LeBel have shown concern about whether or not allegations made through the media are engaged in to avoid a proper investigation.
The high standard of proof in criminal court is designed to respect the fact that the accused is facing a loss of liberty and the possibility of lengthy incarceration, but in the #MeToo era a mere accusation is enough to destroy a person’s life forever. Allegations in the media have ended the careers of many men practically overnight. Any attempt to deny the accusation is met with further condemnation. The accused often become the walking dead, forced to live in the shadows and banned from all social interactions.
Yet no politicians in Quebec have mentioned concerns about the risk of an accused committing suicide. There is no discussion about the fact that not all complainants are actually “victims” and it is unlikely there will be any contemplation about how to compensate someone who is falsely accused.
One thing I do expect is that the committee of “experts” will resolve that more “experts” should be hired to testify in court in order to bolster the credibility of complainants. Until there is more transparency this whole committee just looks like a government funded way to get more government funding for sexual assault activists and “justice” is the farthest thing from their minds.
More convictions do not equal justice and until Quebec figures that out it may well become the most dangerous province in Canada for men.
Iranian-Canadians and community leaders gathered Thursday night at the Iranian Islamic Centre of Montreal to commemorate the lives lost in the tragic shooting down of Ukranian flight 752 by Iranian missiles.
Those who attended included Mayor of Lachine/Lasalle/Dorval, Maya Vodanovich; Assistant of Mayor of Pierrefonds, Sophie Mohsen; MP of Lachine, Anju Dhillon; City councillor for Lachine, Michele Flennery; and Imam Saleh Sibeveih, Director and Cleric of the Islamic Centre of Montreal Canada and Zurich Switzerland.
Imam Saleh Sibeveih spoke at the solemn gathering, one of many such gatherings across Canada during this time of mourning for the 176 victims of the murderous act by the Iranian regime.
The Islamic Centre of Montreal is an orthodox Islamic Centre and cannot be dismissed as fringe or discredited by the Iranian regime.
Left-wing activist Jaggi Singh has been released of all charges in a Quebec City court, due to the city’s inability to hold a trial in English.
Singh, who was facing charges of Obstruction of Justice, was also facing charges of impersonation after being arrested by police and giving the name “Michel Goulet,” with a home address of “the Colosseum,” attempting to impersonate a former Quebec Nordique of the same name.
After 29 months of charges being laid, the trial began—but Quebec’s chief prosecutor Steve Marquis had to postpone the trial.
Mainly due to the fact that the main prosecutor, Marie-Helene Guillemette, has been absent on maternity leave.
This meant that Marquis would have to carry out the trial, but due to his very limited English, the trial would not be proceeding as planned.
Judge Guillemette had set the trial for January without mentioning that she would be absent on maternity leave, something that judges say boiled down to disorganization.
With no one able to hold the trial, Justice Bordeleau announced that Singh would be acquitted of the two charges against him.
In an interview after the decision, Singh chalked up the acquittal to the court “self-sabotaging,” knowing that the Crown would lose in a full trial.
Singh later returned to Montreal, telling media that his struggle “is not in the courtrooms,” but is rather against the “far right.”
Singh has a long history of activism in his hometown Montreal and throughout Canada.
In 2002, Singh participated in an anti-Israel protest against Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu, held by the Hillel club at Concordia University. The talk was later cancelled, as the event turned into a violent clash between protestors and security.
In January 2003, Singh was deported by Israeli authorities after having gone to the West Bank.
On April 19, 2006, Singh was arrested at a pro-Palestinian poetry event at El Salon cafe. There are conflicting reports as to why Singh was arrested, though local police say they were responding to an alleged assault on a taxi driver.
Valentin Auclair, a 38-year-old resident of Granby, Quebec, a town approximately an hour’s drive east of Montreal will be faced with a count of wilful promotion of genocide against an identifiable group, two separate counts of wilful promotion of hatred against an identifiable group, as well as a charge of hate speech.
These charges come after concerning online activity that has been active as recently as Jan. 5 of 2020. The activity of Auclair was first noticed by Quebec college professor Xavier Camus, who monitors extremism within Quebec and sent a detailed tip to Granby authorities.
It was learned that the hate speech used by Auclair was coming from VK, a popular Russian social media platform.
A quick investigation led by Granby Police resulted in a Tuesday court appearance by Auclair.
According to CTV News, the content Auclair shared “allegedly included images promoting Aryan white supremacy and hateful comments about Jews, Muslims, the LGBTQ community and other minority groups. He also allegedly sympathized with neo-Nazis and applauded several mass killers, including the men behind the Quebec City mosque attack and the Montreal Polytechnique massacre.”
As reported by the Canadian Jewish News, Auclair “continued to propagate what (Professor) Camus terms ‘genocidal fantasies’ glorifying Hitler, ranting about Zyklon B and ‘a pile of cadavers,’ about Jews, black people, Arabs, Asians and Latinos.”
Caroline Garland, a spokesperson for the Granby Police said in a statement that “this is an accusation which is still rare in the past few years and it is an individual with no criminal priors.”
Auclair’s case is believed to be the first case that deals with online hate to be tried this year.
Online hate continues to be a reoccurring issue in Canada and was studied in depth by the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights in the previous session of Parliament.
Canadian municipalities are dumping an estimated 400 billion gallons of raw sewage every year. Quebec is the worst offender—leading all other provinces in their failure to meet federal water safety regulations, according to documents obtained through an access to information request by news outlet Blacklock’s Reporter.
The Department of the Environment stated that of the 3.4 billion cubic metres flushed per year across Canada, 374 billion gallons went untreated and did not meet the limits. The department’s researchers also predict the actual discharges are likely much higher.
“These volumes do not include releases from combined sewer overflows, sanitary sewer overflows or any other discharges occurring at a point other than the final discharge point,” staff from the department wrote.
The research involved looking at 1,737 sewage plants across Canada.
In 2012, the Harper government attempted to tackle sewage dumping, however, it was largely viewed as ineffective. So far, eighty-five lethal waste discharges have occurred in 2016: 42 in Quebec; twelve in Ontario; and nine in Alberta. These have often resulted in the fish-killing sewage being leaked into Canada’s waterways.
In late 2015, the federal government waived penalties against Montreal for releasing eight billion litres of sewage into the St. Lawrence River, with then-Environment Minister Catherine McKenna approving the dump under several conditions.