Political Interference in the Mark Norman Trial
May 8, 2019
There is overwhelming evidence that Justin Trudeau and his Liberal government politically interfered in this case and tried to destroy Vice-Admiral Mark Norman.
As the prosecution made clear yesterday, the documents Justin Trudeau and the Liberals were fighting to keep secret from them and from Vice-Admiral Norman were the very documents that caused his charges to be dropped.
This strongly suggests the government was deliberately supressing this evidence in order to maintain a bogus and politically-motivated prosecution on Vice-Admiral Mark Norman.
This is most certainly political interference. And Canadians deserve answers.
Yesterday Mark Norman’s lawyer Marie Henein warned of the dangers of political interference in the Canadian justice system:
“You should be very concerned when anyone tries to erode the resilience of the justice system or demonstrate a failure to understand why it is so fundamental to the democratic values that we hold so dear There are times you agree with what happens in a court, there are times you don’t and that’s fine. But what you don’t do is you don’t put your finger and try to weigh in on the scales of justice, that is not what should be happening.” (Press Conference. May 8, 2019)
Yet Canadians should be concerned about the many instances throughout this process when Prime Minister Trudeau, his cabinet and staff attempted to influence the process.
This story began with former Treasury Board President Scott Brison’s attempt to interfere in a ship contract.
Justin Trudeau was the one who demanded the process that led to the charges:
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called in the RCMP to investigate the leak of classified cabinet deliberations, according to one insider. The decision to launch a criminal investigation was made at the highest level of the government after an internal investigation by Security Operations at the Privy Council Office failed to discover the source of the cabinet leaks.
Trudeau was the one who said Norman would end up in court months before charges were laid. On April 6, 2017:
“As I’ve said before, I support the chief of defence staff in the decision that he took,” Trudeau told reporters in New York City. This is an important matter that is obviously under investigation and will likely end up before the courts so I won’t make any further comments at this time.”
He again made a claim about the case heading to court before any charges were laid on February 1, 2018.
Gen Vance talked with Trudeau, Katie Telford and Gerald Butts about the RCMP investigation but kept no records.
PCO aggressively fought to withhold documents from the Defence including a memo by then PCO Clerk Michael Wernick to Justin Trudeau on the Norman case which was entirely redacted.
Marie Henein noted yesterday that the government had failed to provide both the Defence and Prosecution with documents that contributed to the charges being dropped:
“We have been, and you have all been with us for six months as we have tried, day in day out to try to get that material. It should have been handed over. It should have been handed over to RCMP, it should have been handed over to the prosecution. It was not. As to why, I don’t know, I leave you to answer that.” (Press Conference. May 8, 2019)
Henein also noted at the press conference that PCO lawyers were: “were also counselling witnesses to what they could and could not say.” (Press Conference. May 8, 2019)
Concerns about the activities of PCO were also raised during the pre-trial hearings and
“In my respectful submission…the position the Crown is taking is more concerning, I would say, than the allegations relating to SNC-Lavalin,” Mainville said. “The Prime Minister’s Office, by way of its right arm, the PCO, is dealing directly with the (prosecution service), and the prosecution service apparently is allowing this to happen.”
“So much for the independence of the PPSC,” interjected Justice Heather Perkins McVey, referring to the Public Prosecution Service of Canada.
During the pre-trial hearings a whisleblower testified on how Code Names were being used to evade ATIP and disclosure rules:
The legal team representing Vice-Admiral Mark Norman today called two surprise witnesses. The first, a military member whose name is protected by a publication ban — due to fears that the testimony could lead to reprisals in the workplace — told court about an alleged scheme within National Defence to avoid using Norman’s name in internal correspondence.
Henein has also raised concerns about the Liberal government’s refusal to take any steps to seek the consent of Stephen Harper to release documents from his government.
The refusal to reach out to former prime minister Harper when the bulk was discover covered under that time period and facilitated that documents. All of this was articulated in court. I can’t tell you why those decision, made and assertions were made that people were concerned about vice-admiral mark Norman getting a fair trial. (Press Conference. May 8, 2019)