Former SNC-Lavalin exec, accused in Libyan bribery case, has obstruction of justice charge stayed


Sami Bebawi, a former SNC Lavalin executive, has had an obstruction of justice charge stayed because it took too long for his case to get to trial.

Quebec Superior Court Justice Guy Cournoyer handed down the decision Friday, citing unreasonable delays.

Cournoyer invoked the Jordan decision, a 2016 Supreme Court of Canada ruling which sets out timelines to deal with criminal matters.

He said the case was dormant for 11 months, calling it a « ship without a captain. »

Bebawi is accused of laundering $33 million between 2001 and 2012 in connection with contracts SNC-Lavalin negotiated with the former regime of Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi.

He still faces charges of fraud, extortion, bribing a foreign official, possession of the proceeds of crime, and money laundering.

A request to have those charges stayed was rejected.

The Crown said it would take time to decide whether to appeal the decision. Bebawi declined to comment.

The decision comes amid a firestorm in Ottawa involving the engineering firm.

Jody Wilson-Raybould resigned as veterans affairs minister earlier this week — just days after a Globe and Mail report alleging that, as attorney general, she was pressured to order the director of public prosecutions to draft a « deferred prosecution agreement » to avoid taking SNC-Lavalin to trial on bribery and fraud charges in relation to its Libyan contracts.


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