Information about the Inquiry Committee established in regard to the Honourable Michel Girouard

Ottawa, 18 June 2014 – The Canadian Judicial Council announced today the members of the Inquiry Committee established to review the conduct of Justice Michel Girouard.

The Inquiry Committee is comprised of three members: two Chief Justices appointed by the Canadian Judicial Council and one senior lawyer appointed by the Minister of Justice. The members are: the Honourable Richard Chartier, Chief Justice of Manitoba (Chairperson); the Honourable Paul Crampton, Chief Justice of the Federal Court; and Ronald LeBlanc, Q.C. of the law firm LeBlanc Maillet of New Brunswick.

The Council is also announcing that Marie Cossette of the law firm Lavery in Québec City has been appointed Independent Counsel in accordance with the Council's Bylaws and has the mandate of presenting the case to the Inquiry Committee in the public interest.

Under the Judges Act, the Inquiry Committee is deemed to be a Superior Court. The Committee will decide, in the coming weeks, when it will convene to hear this matter. Inquiry Committee hearings are normally held in public, although private hearings are possible if required in the public interest and the due administration of justice. The Committee will also decide on the full scope of its inquiry.

The judge in this matter has filed a judicial review application in the Federal Court. That application is being defended by the Attorney General of Canada. In respect to those proceedings, Chief Justice Crampton has taken steps to ensure that he has no involvement with the case being heard by the Federal Court.

The mandate of the Inquiry Committee is to review all the issues and submit a report to the Canadian Judicial Council, presenting its findings and conclusions on whether or not a recommendation should be made for the removal of the judge from office. The Council will then make a recommendation to the Minister of Justice regarding the judge's ability to remain in office. Information about the Council, including the process for public inquiries, can be found on the Council's website at www.cjc-ccm.gc.ca.

Contact:
Norman Sabourin
Executive Director and Senior General Counsel
(613) 288-1566 ext 302