Crown, defence both propose that ex-Quebec construction boss not go to jail

Crown, defence both propose that ex-Quebec construction boss not go to jail

Main pic: Former construction boss Lino Zambito testifies before the Charbonneau inquiry probing corruption and collusion in Quebec’s construction industry in this image made off television Monday, October 1, 2012 in Montreal. Photo credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson.

SAINT−JEROME, Que. — The Crown and defence have proposed a community sentence for Lino Zambito, a former construction entrepreneur who became a star whistleblower at Quebec’s corruption inquiry and later pleaded guilty to criminal charges.

If the judge accepts the joint recommendation, Zambito would serve two years less a day in the community.

Sentencing arguments were held Tuesday in Saint−Jerome, north of Montreal.

Quebec court Judge Paul Chevalier is taking the joint suggestion into deliberation and is expected to announce the sentence Nov. 10.

Two years less a day is the longest suspended sentence allowed by the Criminal Code. The agreement would also see Zambito have to do 240 hours of community work and be put on three years’ probation.

Zambito pleaded guilty last May to six charges, including fraud, conspiracy and corruption, related to contracts obtained by his firm, Infrabec, from the City of Boisbriand.

Upon leaving the courtroom, Zambito said he had acknowledged his wrongs on several occasions.

“I think my testimony at the Charbonneau Commission was clear,” he said. “Since then, I have come out in the media and I’ve taken responsibility for my acts. And now we’ll let the judge decide.”

Zambito was arrested by Quebec’s anti−corruption unit in February 2011 at the same time as former Boisbriand mayor Sylvie St−Jean, who pleaded guilty to charges of fraud, conspiracy and breach of faith.

She received a suspended prison sentence.

Zambito’s testimony at the Charbonneau inquiry, which looked at corruption in the province’s construction industry, shed light on systemic collusion at the municipal level that would lead to a spike in the cost of public contracts.

He said construction magnates paid kickbacks to municipal political parties and to members of the Mafia in exchange for public contracts.

The Canadian Press

Categories: News

About Author

Write a Comment

Only registered users can comment.