The Criminal Code provides:
Subject to subsection (3), every one commits perjury who, with intent to mislead, makes before a person who is authorized by law to permit it to be made before him, a false statement under oath or solemn affirmation, by affidavit, solemn declaration or deposition or orally, knowing that the statement is false.”
At a cost of more than $10 million to the taxpayers, including $1.8 million for Mulroney’s legal fees, the Oliphant inquiry into our former PM’s dealings with a sleazy arms dealer/lobbyist has found the following uncontested facts:
Mulroney was asked under oath: “Did you maintain contact with Mr. Schreiber after you ceased being Prime Minister?”
He replied that he had “a cup of coffee” with the lobbyist “once or twice”.
Years later, again under oath, he admitted having received $225,000 in cash; having kept no records of it, and having only declared the income six years later. He was paid $2.1 million to settle the lawsuit during which he made the “cup of coffee” statement.
Now there are calls for him to reimburse the money he received:
Experienced criminal lawyers know it is very difficult to avoid a jail sentence for perjury, since this offence undermines the integrity of the judicial system.
Recognizing his inferior status this humble writer, out of craven fear of being sued, wishes to avoid being taken as expressing any opinion on these facts. Readers of more exalted status are invited to comment.