MONTRÉAL, July 9, 2015 /CNW Telbec/ - The Canadian Bar Association – Québec Branch ("CBA-Québec") is deeply concerned by the crisis that has been gripping the Barreau du Québec (the "Québec Bar") since July 1, 2015, when its Board of Directors announced its decision to suspend the President of the Québec Bar, Mtre Lu Chan Khuong, Ad E., from office until further notice.
The reasons cited and made public to date by the Board to justify its decision are in our view insufficient and contrary to the principles of fundamental justice that underlie our profession.
The Diversion Program created by the Québec government is validly in effect and its confidential nature must be respected. To date the President of the Québec Bar has not been charged with the commission of any offence, and her file concerning the facts at issue has been closed. Like any other person in Canada, she is entitled to the presumption of innocence.
CBA-Québec is calling on the Minister of Justice of Québec to open an investigation into the source of this breach of confidentiality and to take the necessary measures to preserve the integrity of the Diversion Program and sanction those responsible for abusing it. It should be emphasized that the Program has been in place for some 20 years and more than 100,000 files have been resolved pursuant thereto.
CBA-Québec accordingly insists that Mtre Lu Chan Khuong, Ad. E., the democratically elected President of the Québec Bar by popular vote, be immediately allowed to resume the duties of her office, and that the Québec Bar's Board of Directors collaborate fully with her in ensuring the proper operation of the professional order of Québec lawyers.
The Canadian Bar Association – Québec Branch protects the interests of its members and defends the fundamental values of the legal profession. It is dedicated to improving the law and the administration of justice. It is the only association in Québec whose membership extends to lawyers in private practice, in-house counsel, public-sector lawyers, law students, law professors, notaries and members of the judiciary.
SOURCE Association du Barreau canadien, Division du Québec
For further information: Maître Manon Dulude, Assistant Executive Director, Canadian Bar Association - Québec Branch, (514) 393-9600, extension 26