Former Laval mayor at heart of corruption scandal granted full parole

MONTREAL — The former mayor of Quebec’s third-largest city has been granted full parole after serving a third of his six-year prison sentence for involvement in a corruption scheme.

A Parole Board of Canada decision Thursday noted that Gilles Vaillancourt continues to downplay his responsibility for his crimes and their impact on society.

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But his behaviour in prison and since he was granted day parole a year ago was judged satisfactory, and there is no reason to believe he would commit a violent crime if released, the decision said.

Vaillancourt, 77, was Laval mayor between 1989 and 2012.

He was arrested in May 2013 by Quebec’s anti-corruption unit and accused of taking part in a scheme under which the City of Laval awarded municipal contracts in exchange for bribes and illegal donations from construction contractors.

Under a joint Crown-defence agreement, Vaillancourt was sentenced in December 2016 to just under six years in prison. He also had to reimburse the city about $8.6 million, the parole board document says.

The parole board imposed several conditions on his release.

He is banned from participating in any paid or volunteer political activities. He cannot be responsible for the finances or investments of individuals, companies or charities. And he will have to disclose his financial records to his parole officer.

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