Depardieu's expulsion from the National Order of Quebec was considered illegal

Quebec Premier François Legault acted illegally by removing French actor Gérard Depardieu from the National Order of Quebec without taking into account the presumption of innocence or existing regulations governing sanctions, lawyer Julius Gray said Thursday.

Mr. Gray, Mr. He confirmed that no legal action has been taken against Depardieu, whose comments in a documentary led the Quebec government to strip him of his decorations.

“It's completely illegal,” he said in an interview Duty. If there is a power to suspend or something like that, it cannot do without the rules of natural justice. »

In recent decades, Mr. Gray, not knowing Mr.'s version of the facts. Depardieu felt that the government could not allow him. For this reason, the actor “technically” has to sue the state of Quebec.

“If he gets angry, he can say: Here you had a restriction and a regulation is part of the law. You did not follow your rules,” explained the lawyer.

Duty The National Order of Quebec's internal management regulations require dismissal only if one of its members is convicted following a legal process, it revealed Wednesday.

After receiving a recommendation from Quebec's National Order Council, Mr. Mr. Departeau is expelled. Legault announced, however, relying on its internal regulations.

The Quebec government explained that the decision was made because the actor made “derogatory and offensive comments against several women and one girl” in a documentary presented in France.

Mr. Depardieu has been targeted in recent years by allegations of sexual assault.

Moral panic

Mr. Gray was concerned.

“It appears that impeachment is tantamount to disqualification, which is unacceptable,” he said.

According to the lawyer, the decision undermines the presumption of innocence, which has been established in law for centuries.

“It's an example of this moral panic, when hearing these kinds of allegations, everyone is so eager to show their anger that they act without thinking,” he said.

According to the regulations in force within the National Order of Quebec, in 2002 Mr. As Depardieu was knighted, Mr. Mr. Legault was not obliged to intervene. Gray believes.

“He is under no obligation to comment,” he said. With the existing solution, he will have to wait for the outcome of a trial. If there had been a trial, a decision, there would have been a discretionary decision to weigh the pros and cons. »

Mr. As for Depardieu's comments, the lawyer believes they risk being taken out of context.

“Usually you have to wait to see what happens, and one question clearly arises: was the other person angry or not. »

Amateur government

Conservative leader Eric Duhaime, Mr. Legault considered the French actor's presumption of innocence violated. He should have respected the rules and waited to see if he was subject to legal punishment.

“Imagine for two seconds that a court acquits Mr. Depardieu,” he said. All are innocent until proven guilty. The presumption of innocence exists in our justice system. »

According to a documentary broadcast by France Televisions, Mr. Mr. Departeau's “slanderous remarks” Mr. Legault was right to condemn. Duheim confirmed.

“Everyone was surprised and disappointed when they saw Mr. Depardieu's comments,” he said. These are unacceptable views, and I think there is consensus on that. Urgent where there is trouble. »

He is associated with political intervention Mr. After Debordieu's comments, Mr. Seeing that Legault himself had asked the Council of the Order for a recommendation, Mr. Duhaime was concerned.

“It is obvious that this puts undue pressure on members who are supposed to make decisions in a non-partisan manner,” he said.

Mr. Duheim, Mr. Legault believes his decision reflects his weak position in public opinion, which could affect Quebec's image.

“It looks like we have an amateur government,” he explained.

The Parti Québécois does not want to take a position on the government's decision. Québec solidaire also indicated that it does not currently have a position on the matter. As for Quebec's Liberal Party, it did not respond to requests Duty.

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