Gomery Witness Dezainde: Life Threatened


I only caught the last part of the interview, so perhaps they’d been talking about it incessantly beforehand. But at no time after Lawand let slip this thunderbolt did I hear Hanomansing say, “What?” or “WHAT” or “WHAT THE HELL DID YOU JUST SAY?” It just seemed to pass without comment. Oh, of course “The former director-general of the Liberal Party of Canada in Quebec testified under oath that his life had been threatened.”

“Did I mishear? Am I crazy? Doesn’t anyone else think this is huge?”

Apparently not. If burying it deep in the article means anything, the Canadian Press considers physical violence to be just another day at the office for the Libranos.

Dezainde’s appearance at the inquiry also took a dramatic turn when he broke down in tears after mentioning an alleged threat by an associate of then-public works minister Alfonso Gagliano during a spat over underground party fundraising.

The witness lost his composure after explaining how the party finances at Montreal headquarters had been “taken hostage” by Gagliano associates, including aide Joe Morselli. Dezainde said Morselli blew a gasket in July 2001 after Dezainde refused to rehire a fundraiser fired days earlier for lobbying government departments, in writing, on party letterhead.

Dezainde said Morselli confronted him in the canteen of the Montreal office and pointed a finger centimetres from his face.

“He said, ‘From here on in, I declare war against you,”’ recalled Dezainde.

He said he immediately reported the incident to Gagliano, who blamed the incident on Morselli’s bad temper and promised to have words with his confidant.

Dezainde broke down as he recalled telling friends and family about the tense moment. Presiding judge John Gomery, just before ordering a break in the proceedings, asked him: “You considered this to be a threat of physical violence?”

Dezainde replied: “Yes.”

Now, go read this, too. Apparently, it is not permissible to mention that money was dropped off in Chretien’s riding, because it’s outside of Gomery’s mandate.

What was that kerfuffle, again, about we “tin-foil hatters” making too far too much out of Paragraph K?

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Kate McMillan
About Kate McMillan
Kate McMillan is the proprietor of small dead animals, which has won numerous awards including Best Conservative Blog and Best Canadian Blog. She contributed nearly 300 pieces to OTB between November 2004 and June 2007. Follow her on Twitter @katewerk.