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Quebec’s anti-corruption squad arrests seven in Montreal contract investigation

Source: Interstude.

This material belongs to: National Post.

MONTREAL — A former Montreal city councillor is among seven people arrested today in a municipal corruption probe.

The province’s anti-corruption unit, known as UPAC, says they’re also looking for one more person following a sweep.

The squad says its current investigation began in 2014 and involves about 30 contracts doled out for professional services — mainly engineering contracts — by the City of Montreal.

The unit says in a statement their probe suggests a network of engineering firms, municipal officials and an elected official had developed a contract-sharing system.

They allege that in exchange for those lucrative contracts, there were benefits that included political financing, kickbacks and other personal favours worth $160 million.

A former chairman of Montreal’s powerful executive committee, a former Montreal public works director and a municipal party fundraiser are among those under arrest.

UPAC says the charges against the suspects vary, ranging from conspiracy to commit fraud and municipal corruption to breach of trust for certain officials.