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Canada ranked more corrupt in 2019 because of SNC-Lavalin scandal

Canada is no longer amongst the top 10 least corrupt countries in the world.

Because of the SNC-Lavalin scandal, Canada is no longer amongst the top 10 least corrupt countries in the world.

According to the 2019 Corruption Perceptions Index released by Transparency International, Canada now ranks 12th amongst the least corrupt countries. 

In 2018, Canada held the index’s ninth spot, while in 2010 Canada was in sixth place. 

The SNC-Lavalin scandal came to a head when it was revealed by former Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould that she was pressured by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his office to interfere in the company’s corruption trial. 

Despite Trudeau’s initial claim that the allegations were false, Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion concluded that the Prime Minister had in fact broken ethics laws when directing his office to pressure Wilson-Raybould to change her mind. 

“The authority of the Prime Minister and his office was used to circumvent, undermine and attempt to discredit the decision of the Director of Public Prosecutions as well as the authority of Ms. Wilson‑Raybould as the Crown’s chief law officer,” wrote Commissioner Dion in his report. 

Recently, a division of SNC-Lavalin was found guilty of fraud over $5,000 with regard to the company’s operations in Libya while it was ruled by former dictator Muammar Gaddafi. 

SNC-Lavalin Construction Inc. was ordered to pay $280 million in fines over a five-year period and be under monitoring and probation for three years. 

A Quebec court also found former SNC-Lavalin vice-president Sami Bebawi guilty of five charges including corruption of foreign officials, fraud, and laundering proceeds of a crime. 

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