OTTAWA — The federal authorities is defending its refusal to reveal the contents of a 60-page memo the nation’s high bureaucrat despatched to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau about Vice-Admiral Mark Norman.
In a press release Friday, the Division of Justice mentioned the memo despatched by Michael Wernick, clerk of the Privy Council, to Trudeau final October was fully blacked out by authorities legal professionals.
Norman’s lawyer Marie Henein revealed the memo’s existence throughout a pre-trial listening to Thursday, saying the federal government had withheld its contents due to solicitor-client privilege.
After each Henein and Justice Heather Perkins-McVey famous that Wernick was not a lawyer, the decide agreed to put aside two days in April for Henein to problem the privilege declare.
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In its assertion, the Justice Division mentioned the memo was dealt with the identical approach as the opposite paperwork requested by Norman’s authorized crew and blacked out by authorities legal professionals.
“These redactions had been utilized by authorized counsel,” the Justice Division mentioned, including that “such redactions are according to the traditional course of utilized to all paperwork.
“The ultimate say on these redactions and relevance of the paperwork rests with the courtroom.”
READ MORE: Mark Norman’s lawyer slams Justice Dept. for ‘inaccurate’ statements about case
Friday’s assertion is the most recent from the Justice Division in regards to the Norman case, a few of which Henein flagged to the courtroom earlier this month as being “inaccurate.”
Suspended because the army’s second-in-command in January 2017, Norman was charged final yr with breach of belief for allegedly leaking authorities secrets and techniques to strain the newly minted Trudeau authorities to approve a $700-million shipbuilding contract.
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That contract, negotiated by the Harper Conservatives and finalized by Trudeau’s Liberals in November 2015, concerned leasing a transformed civilian ship from Davie Shipbuilding in Quebec as a short lived naval provide vessel.
Norman has denied any wrongdoing and his politically charged trial is scheduled to start out in August and run by a lot of the autumn federal election.
Norman’s authorized crew has been preventing since October for entry to hundreds of inner authorities paperwork they are saying will show the suspended army officer’s innocence and present that the federal government interfered in his case.
Subpoenas had been issued final month for inner communications from senior officers within the Prime Minister’s Workplace and the Privy Council Workplace in regards to the case, together with emails, BlackBerry messages and different data.