The military police watchdog is launching a probe into how investigators handled a historical sexual-assault allegation against a senior officer who was a central figure in Canada’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout.
A Quebec court acquitted Maj.-Gen. Dany Fortin last December of one count of sexual assault, after the military police investigated the allegation from 1988 and then passed the case along to provincial prosecutors.
Fortin claims he has been the victim of a biased investigation and that he was charged on the basis of insufficient evidence.
The Military Police Complaints Commission is now looking into how the military police handled the case, saying Fortin’s claims about senior military officials being involved make it a matter of public interest.
Fortin had been leading the federal government’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout in May 2021 when he was removed from the role pending an investigation.
A Quebec civilian judge acquitted him, saying the complainant was likely sexually assaulted but the Crown had not proven Fortin was the assailant, and the Canadian Armed Forces subsequently cleared him of misconduct.
The Canadian Press