Justin Trudeau and Obstruction of Justice

The ethics commissioner for Canada has issued a report that concludes that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau broke Canada’s ethics laws (and is that not an interesting thing that there are laws on ethics in Canada?). The conclusion comes on the basis of Mr. Trudeau’s intervention in a criminal case against the Canadian firm, SNC-Lavalin, for allegedly bribing Libyan officials in order to obtain contracts with the Libyan government. The report concludes that Mr. Trudeau had used his office “to circumvent, undermine and ultimately attempt to discredit the now-former justice minister, Jody Wilson-Raybould, to seek only a civil penalty, not a criminal conviction, for SNC-Lavalin. Ms. Wilson-Raybould said that she was “bullied” by Mr. Trudeau, and was eventually demoted. She later resigned from the cabinet, and another member resigned in solidarity. Both were removed from the Liberal caucus by Mr. Trudeau. They are running in the October elections as independents.

Interestingly, Mr. Trudeau does not deny that he tried to influence Ms. Wilson-Raybould. Rather, he was simply trying to save jobs. If SNC-Lavalin had been convicted, thousands of employees would have been laid off because a criminal conviction would bar the company from all government contracts. Nice try, but the old ends-and-means strategy does not justify interference with the criminal and/or civil justice system. Mr. Trudeau said that he disagrees with the ethics report because he is not prohibited from having contact with the justice minister. Nice try again, but unless Canadian ethics are now haywire, executive selective influence exerted over prosecutorial decisions on behalf of well heeled constituents is generally thought to be corrupt.

How the enlightened are fallen!

About mmjdiary

Professor Marianne Jennings is an emeritus professor of legal and ethical studies from the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, retiring in 2011 after 35 years of teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in ethics and the legal environment of business. During her tenure at ASU, she served as director of the Joan and David Lincoln Center for Applied Ethics from 1995-1999. In 2006, she was appointed faculty director for the W.P. Carey Executive MBA Program. She has done consulting work for businesses and professional groups including AICPA, Boeing, Dial Corporation, Edward Jones, Mattel, Motorola, CFA Institute, Southern California Edison, the Institute of Internal Auditors, AIMR, DuPont, AES, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Motorola, Hy-Vee Foods, IBM, Bell Helicopter, Amgen, Raytheon, and VIAD. The sixth edition of her textbook, Case Studies in Business Ethics, was published in February 2011. The ninth edition of her textbook, Business: lts Legal, Ethical and Global Environment was published in January 2011. The 23rd edition of her book, Business Law: Principles and Cases, will be published in January 2013. The tenth edition of her book, Real Estate Law, will also be published in January 2013. Her book, A Business Tale: A Story of Ethics, Choices, Success, and a Very Large Rabbit, a fable about business ethics, was chosen by Library Journal in 2004 as its business book of the year. A Business Tale was also a finalist for two other literary awards for 2004. In 2000 her book on corporate governance was published by the New York Times MBA Pocket Series. Her book on long-term success, Building a Business Through Good Times and Bad: Lessons from Fifteen Companies, Each With a Century of Dividends, was published in October 2002 and has been used by Booz, Allen, Hamilton for its work on business longevity. Her latest book, The Seven Signs of Ethical Collapse was published by St. Martin’s Press in July 2006 and has been a finalist for two book awards. Her weekly columns are syndicated around the country, and her work has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Tribune, the New York Times, Washington Post, and the Reader's Digest. A collection of her essays, Nobody Fixes Real Carrot Sticks Anymore, first published in 1994 is still being published. She has been a commentator on business issues on All Things Considered for National Public Radio. She has served on four boards of directors, including Arizona Public Service (1987-2000), Zealous Capital Corporation, and the Center for Children with Chronic Illness and Disability at the University of Minnesota. She was appointed to the board of advisors for the Institute of Nuclear Power Operators in 2004 and served on the board of trustees for Think Arizona, a public policy think tank. She has appeared on CNBC, CBS This Morning, the Today Show, and CBS Evening News. In 2010 she was named one of the Top 100 Thought Leaders in Business Ethics by Trust Across America. Her books have been translated into four different languages. She received the British Emerald award for authoring one of their top 50 articles in management publications, chosen from over 15,000 articles. Personal: Married since 1976 to Terry H. Jennings, Maricopa County Attorney’s Office Deputy County Attorney; five children: Sarah, Sam, and John, and the late Claire and Hannah Jennings.
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2 Responses to Justin Trudeau and Obstruction of Justice

  1. Robert Giebelhaus says:

    Excellent article. Canadians are aware Trudeau has immunity to criminal prosecution. All dictators do.

  2. mmjdiary says:

    I see also that he is after the truckers now. Nothing liking piling on a group of hard-working souls without whom none of us can survive. Anyone with the temerity to stage a protest in -30-degree weather should be off limits for all tinhorn, tin-eared prime ministers, presidents, royalty, rock stars, dictators, and Neil Young.

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