Quebec corruption inquiry chief says commission work will continue despite break

Associated Press

MONTREAL - The head of Quebec's corruption inquiry is calling for a go-slow approach in the examination of allegations of wrongdoing in the awarding of public contracts.

Justice France Charbonneau said this morning the commission can't do everything at once and that all pieces of the puzzle will eventually be assembled.

The public portion of the inquiry is now suspended until late January, although investigators will continue to work until then.

The inquiry has been criticized for naming people without giving them a chance to defend themselves.

Charbonneau says the commission has sought to protect the reputation of witnesses and potential witnesses.

She says the commission has done everything it can to protect ongoing police investigations.

That sometimes means changing the order in which the inquiry hears witnesses and evidence.

She says two new lawyers will be added to replace two senior counsels who quit during the fall sitting.

Commission officials say the longer than scheduled break is necessary in order to regroup after losing the veteran lawyers.

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