Appeal court to deliberate on ex-Quebec lieutenant-governor's sentence

QUEBEC -- The province's highest court will deliberate on an appeal of the 18-month jail term for ex-Quebec lieutenant-governor Lise Thibault.

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A lawyer for Thibault appeared before the Quebec Court of Appeal today to appeal her sentence for fraud and breach of trust.

Thibault pleaded guilty in December 2014 after a 2007 report by the federal and provincial auditors general revealed she claimed more than $700,000 in improper expenses when she held the vice-regal post.

She was sentenced to the 18 months last September but was freed after spending six nights behind bars.

Her lawyer, Marc Labelle, has said his client's case was unique, partly because she is 76, is confined to a wheelchair and has health problems, including anxiety attacks.

He said last fall the judge who imposed the sentence should have taken those factors into consideration.

Labelle also argued Quebec court Judge Carol St-Cyr should not have put the emphasis on making an example of Thibault just because of her position as the Queen's representative in the province between 1997 and 2007.

In sentencing Thibault, St-Cyr called her behaviour "highly reprehensible" and part of a "culture of deceit."



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