May 22, 2022

The Queens County Citizen

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Secret trial | The Quebec court is tired of keeping the chief justice in the dark

Secret trial |  The Quebec court is tired of keeping the chief justice in the dark

The Quebec court chief justice is fed up with the recent secret trial in Quebec. After “all possible inspections” failed to find the identity of the judge responsible for this extraordinary case, she filed an official legal request to have the confidential file sent to her.

Posted at 10:45 am

By Vincent Lauro

By Vincent Lauro
Press

Philip Teasera-Lessard

Philip Teasera-Lessard
Press

“I do not yet know whether this case was decided by a Quebec court, but I believe that the revised version of the judgment published on March 23 raises significant concerns that fall within my purview,” wrote Chief Justice Lucy Rondo. He sent a letter Monday morning to all the judges in his court.

“I therefore ask the Court of Appeal, among other things, to obtain, under the seal, a complete trial file that allows me to assume the responsibilities arising out of my duties, or the relevant material that allows it to be reconstructed.”

On March 25, Press The Court of Appeal has revealed how a secret crime trial was discovered in Quebec, and all traces of it have been erased. The accused, a police informer, was accused of committing the crime without entering the case number in the list of cases conducted by the court. The verdict convicting him does not have a file number and usually involves interrogation of witnesses outside the court, without archiving the proceedings in the court’s registry.

“In short, there is no trace other than the memory of those involved in this trial,” concluded the three judges of the Supreme Quebec Court responsible for reviewing the case.

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The Court of Appeal ruled that the exercise was “contrary to the fundamental principles of justice” and “contrary to the values ​​of liberal democracy,” but did not disclose the name of the judge involved or the district in which it was located. The Court of Appeals’ decision, however, cited the Quebec Court’s rules, which led many observers to believe it was a questionable court.

The judge has not yet appeared

However, despite the departure of the Minister of Justice, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, the Bar Association and the opposition parties, the judge presiding over the secret hearing has not yet come forward.

The chief justice of the Quebec court said that despite his attempts to do so, she could not find his identity. She therefore asked the Court of Appeal to send under seal the information that would enable her to do so.

“After the Intervener, after reading the revised version of the judgment, failed all possible inspections with the various judges who had assumed management duties in the court at the time of affecting the situation,” his request states. If she is successful, information can be sent to her without keeping the file public.

At the same time, as part of a special process, Justice Minister Simon Jolin-Barrett asked his lawyers to take steps to make the judge’s name public.