Joint suggestion of a prison sentence, suspended for Lino Zambito

entente-prevoit-egalement-240-heuresThe Crown and defense have proposed, by mutual agreement, a two-year imprisonment less a day to be served in the community for the former construction contractor Lino Zambito.

The sentencing submissions took place Tuesday at the court of St. Jerome. Even if both parties found common ground, Judge Paul Chevalier of the Quebec Court took under advisement the decision. It will make its final decision on 10 November.

The sentence of two years less a day proposed is the longest sentence with reprieve permitted by the Criminal Code, which allows the accused to avoid ending up behind bars.

The agreement also includes 240 hours of community service and three years probation for Mr. Zambito, during which it must undertake to keep the peace and be of good behavior.

The star witness of the Charbonneau Commission pleaded guilty May 13 to six counts of fraud, conspiracy and corruption. Charges that were related to contracts won by his firm, Infrabec, with the City of Boisbriand, north of Montreal.

On leaving the court on Tuesday, Mr Zambito recalled that he recognized his mistakes repeatedly. “I think that my testimony at the Charbonneau Commission was clear. Since that time, I came out in the media, I made affirmations, all the time I assumed my actions, “he has said.

“And then we let the chance the judge to sentence,” he added.

Lino Zambito was arrested by the Unité permanente anticorruption in February 2011, together with the former mayor of Boisbriand Sylvie St-Jean, who also pleaded guilty to charges of fraud, conspiracy and breach of trust in 2014. She was sentenced to a suspended prison sentence.

After his arrest and indictment, Mr. Zambito began to table, and his testimony before the Charbonneau Commission, in 2012, had helped to understand the workings of the system of collusion which allowed to inflate the price of public contracts, particularly in the municipalities of the Montreal area.

He had thus revealed that construction companies paid kickbacks to municipal political parties and members of the Mafia in exchange for public contracts.

His transition to the Sunday program “Everyone talks” had attracted the sympathy of part of the population, which saw him become a repentant criminal informant.

Comments on the sentence were also held on Tuesday to Guiseppe Zambito’s father, Lino, who pleaded guilty May 13 to a charge of intimidation. The Crown and defense have proposed jointly an absolute discharge.

The accused presented evidence demonstrating that the judge Chevalier had made donations of $ 20,000 to the Sainte-Justine Hospital, the hospital of Saint-Eustache and various foundations.

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