News

Mark Norman’s lawyer slams Justice Dept. for ‘inaccurate’ statements about case

Mark Norman’s lawyer slams Justice Dept. for ‘inaccurate’ statements about case
Canada
The statements she criticized came earlier this month in the form of several Twitter posts and a public fact-sheet in which the department said it wanted to “clarify” Henein’s requests for internal records held by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and other top officials.

Directed at a journalist and Trudeau’s former principal secretary, Gerald Butts, the tweets from March 6 asserted at one point that “the government is providing documents to the judge for her review at the pace directed by her and will continue to do so.”

A similar comment was contained in the fact-sheet, which was posted to the Justice Department’s website and sent to other journalists.

Except Justice Heather Perkins-McVey has previously questioned why it is taking the government so long to gather the requested documents, which she must review before deciding whether they should be released to Norman’s lawyers.

Copies provided by Henein’s office showed that the amendments included removing the comment about Perkins-McVey directing the department to produce the documents at a certain pace.

Henein nonetheless questioned why Justice Canada officials felt the need to comment publicly on the case, adding that the department has been posting statements that “we take the position are inaccurate.”

“We’ve made our position known in writing to the Department of Justice as to the propriety of that sort of behaviour,” she said. “We take issue with a number of the statements that they posted.”

Justice Canada did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Monday.

The court also heard that an abuse-of-process hearing scheduled for next week, in which Norman’s lawyers were to argue that the case against him should be tossed, will be delayed because they still don’t have the requested documents.

Norman’s team has been fighting since October for internal communications from the Prime Minister’s Office and the Privy Council Office about the case, which included issuing subpoenas last month for emails, BlackBerry messages and other records.

Subpoenas were issued for Trudeau, Butts, Trudeau’s chief of staff Katie Telford and Privy Council clerk Michael Wernick, among others, as Henein tries to find records to prove political interference in Norman’s case and have the charges dismissed.

Justice Canada lawyer Robert McKinnon told the court most of the subpoenaed material had been delivered to Perkins-McVey for her review.

But Henein, who has accused the government of trying to delay Norman’s actual trial, which is scheduled to start in August and run through most of the election, said she still hadn’t seen any of the material.

As a result, she said, she wouldn’t be able to make her abuse-of-process case next week.

The court will now aim to hold the five-day hearing in April.

McKinnon also indicated it could take another two to four weeks for the government to finish handing over some encrypted information and records involving former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould.

Norman, who previously served as the military’s second-in-command, was charged last year with breach of trust for allegedly leaking government secrets to help a Quebec shipyard with a $700-million naval contract.

He has denied any wrongdoing and his lawyers have accused him of having been a victim of political games and interference by the Trudeau government.
Read more on globalnews.ca
News Topics :
Similar Articles :
Canada
OTTAWA—Vice Admiral Mark Norman’s lawyer Marie Henein has called out the Justice Canada for making what she says are “inaccurate” public statements about her client’s high profile case while conceding a delay...
Canada
OTTAWA—Vice Admiral Mark Norman’s lawyer is threatening to call Gerald Butts and Privy Council clerk Michael Wernick to testify in open court if they don’t produce a series of documents that...
Canada
OTTAWA — Vice Admiral Mark Norman ‘s lawyer is threatening to call Gerald Butts and Privy Council clerk Michael Wernick to testify in open court if they don’t produce a series...
Canada
Vice Admiral Mark Norman’s lawyer says she wants to see a secret 60 page memo the federal government’s top bureaucrat penned to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau about her client’s case. Lawyer Marie...
Top Stories
OTTAWA — The federal justice department has deleted tweets posted to its official Twitter account after complaints from lawyers representing Vice Admiral Mark Norman. The tweets addressed Norman’s legal team’s request...