SNC-Lavalin Affair - Timeline of Events

Here is a good timeline of events in respect to the allegations of inappropriate pressure on the former Attorney General:

2016 – 2018 – Hundreds of meetings between PMO, Minister’s senior political staff and SNC-Lavalin

  • This includes former Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister Gerald Butts, Senior Advisors Mathieu Bouchard and Elder Marques, and Clerk of the Privy Council Michael Wernick

September 4, 2018 – Director of Public Prosecutions tells SNC-Lavalin that the trial will go ahead. At this point anyone would need a lawful authority to stop the trial. This was the beginning of a months-long unsolicited, coordinated and sustained attempt to stop the trial of SNC-Lavalin on bribery charges.

  • Trudeau and his closest advisors made at least four distinct efforts to stop the trial: this occurred on September 17, December 5, December 18 and December 19.

September 17, 2018 – SNC-Lavalin writes to the Director of Public Prosecutions asking her to stop the trial.

  • This was the first of at least three letters, that we know of, from the company to the Director to try and stop the trial.

September 17, 2018 –Trudeau and Wernick meet with Wilson-Raybould to discuss the prosecution.

  • Did Trudeau know the Director of Public Prosecutions had already denied a deferred prosecution agreement to SNC-Lavalin
  • Why did he believe it was necessary to inform Wilson-Raybould of her authority in this matter after a decision had already been made and what was his lawful authority to do so?

September 18, 2018 – After meeting Wernick, SNC Lavalin writes again to the Director of Public Prosecutions, asking her to stop the trial.

  • Did Wernick encourage SNC-Lavalin to continue their lobbying campaign?
  • Was this on the instruction of Trudeau?

September 24, 2018 – SNC-Lavalin once again writes to the Director of Public Prosecutions, asking her to stop the trial.

October 10, 2018 – SNC-Lavalin publishes a news release informing Canadians of the Director of Public Prosecutions decision to proceed with the trial. SNC-Lavalin shares fell by 15%.

October 15, 2018 – SNC-Lavalin writes to Trudeau demanding him to stop the trial

October 19, 2018 – SNC-Lavalin files for judicial review

October 29, 2018 – SNC-Lavalin is in court on their bribery and corruption charges

Month of November – Allegedly nothing happens on this file

December 5, 2018 – Butts meets with Wilson-Raybould at the Chateau Laurier to stop the trial.

  • When did Trudeau direct Butts to meet with her to pressure her to stop the trial and under what lawful authority did he do so?
  • What did Butts report back to Trudeau about whether Wilson-Raybould would stop the trial?
  • Why did Butts tell Wilson-Raybould to contact Wernick?
  • Did Wilson-Raybould contact Wernick following this meeting?

December 6, 2018 – Trudeau writes to SNC-Lavalin referring the matter of their trial to the attention of Wilson-Raybould.

December 18, 2018 – Senior staff in the Prime Minister’s Office, including Telford and Butts, call Jessica Prince, Chief of Staff to Wilson-Raybould, to pressure her to stop the trial.

  • When did Trudeau direct his staff to put pressure on Wilson-Raybould’s staff and under what lawful authority did they act?
  • How and when was Wilson-Raybould informed of the content of this meeting?

December 19, 2018 –Wernick has lunch with Trudeau and his senior political staff to continue the unsolicited, coordinated and sustained attempt to stop the trial.

December 19, 2018 – Following instruction from Trudeau, Wernick calls Wilson-Raybould to pressure her to stop the trial and provide “context”, two months after being informed that she will not intervene.

  • How did Wilson-Raybould receive the “context” provided by Wernick in his attempts to stop the trial?
  • Under what lawful authority did Trudeau instruct Wernick to apply pressure to stop the trial?
  • How does Trudeau believe that his actions did not constitute obstruction of justice?

January 6, 2019 –Trudeau informs Wilson-Raybould that she is being fired as Attorney General.

  • How and by whom was she informed?
  • Was the SNC-Lavalin matter discussed, and what other reasons were given?

January 14, 2019 – Wilson-Raybould is officially fired as Attorney General, and she publishes a five-page open letter, stating her willingness to “speak truth to power”. She is replaced with an Attorney General willing to stop the trial.

February 7, 2019 – Globe and Mail story breaks that there was inappropriate pressure. Trudeau claims the story is false, in his first version of the story.

February 8, 2019 – Conservative Members of the Justice Committee request emergency hearings into this matter.

February 8, 2019 – Arif Virani, Parliamentary Secretary for Justice claims that no one in the government pressured Wilson-Raybould

February 10, 2019 – Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer sends a letter to Trudeau demanding that he waive his Solicitor-Client privilege to allow the former Attorney General to speak.

February 11, 2019 – Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion launches investigation

February 11, 2019 – In a new version of his story, Trudeau says that Wilson-Raybould’s presence in Cabinet speaks for itself.

February 12, 2019 –Wilson-Raybould resigns from Cabinet

  • What was discussed during the meetings between Trudeau and Wilson-Raybould in British Columbia?
  • What reasons did Wilson-Raybould give to the Prime Minister for her resignation?

February 12, 2019 – Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer sends a letter to Trudeau demanding the preservation of documents and reminding officials that destroying documents may be a criminal offence.

February 13, 2019 – Trudeau further changes his story for the third time, saying that he is disappointed with Wilson-Raybould and that she should have raised issues directly with him.

  • When was the first time Trudeau became aware that he and his office had exceeded their lawful authority?

February 13, 2019 – Liberals on the Justice Committee vote to block nearly all requested witnesses

February 15, 2019 –Trudeau changes his story for the fourth time, saying that if Scott Brison hasn’t resigned, Wilson-Raybould would still be Attorney General.

February 18, 2019 –Butts resigns from the Prime Minister’s Office, claiming he did nothing wrong.

  • Is Butts’ resignation linked to the attempts to stop the trial of SNC-Lavalin?
  • Given that Trudeau has maintained that Butts did nothing wrong, why did he accept his resignation?
  • Has the RCMP contacted Butts?

February 21, 2019 – In testifying before the Justice Committee, Wernick confirms that he and other senior political officials “pressured” Wilson-Raybould to stop the trial

February 25, 2019 – 15 days after Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer requests it, Trudeau partially waives solicitor-client privilege.

February 26, 2019 – The Justice Committee invites Wilson-Raybould to appear at committee on February 27 at 3:15 PM.


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