Friday, July 22, 2011
Key figure in sponsorship scandal set to become witness
The RCMP is closing in on its first major Liberal operative after a decade-long probe into the sponsorship program, as it nears cutting a deal with another player in the scandal to become a state witness and testify about millions in alleged political kickbacks, government sources said.
It is the bookend to a story that, until recently, The Globe and Mail has been prevented from investigating. Only after a winning a lengthy battle at the Supreme Court last year against Groupe Polygone could the newspaper continue to press on in the public interest. Polygone was attempting to force the newspaper to reveal the identity of a key source as part of its defence against a federal lawsuit aimed at recouping money the former Liberal government paid the firm. As part of its ruling, the top court struck down a contentious publication ban preventing The Globe from reporting on negotiations to settle the federal lawsuit.