CN Rail trying to 'shut up' former supervisor for giving financial documents to OPP

By Kenneth Jackson
APTN National News
A former supervisor at the Canadian National Railway says the law firm representing the railroad is trying to get him before a judge this week to “shut me up” for providing the Ontario Police Police with documents he claims show financial irregularities in the company.

Lawyer Monique Jilesen of Lenczner Slaght has requested Scott Holmes be in court Friday for violating the deemed undertaking rule, meaning Holmes provided documents to a third party and allegedly wasn’t supposed to.

Holmes has provided thousands of documents to OPP since February and during several meetings with detectives from the corruption section of the OPP’s anti-rackets unit.

“They want to bring me in front of a judge and shut me up. They say I broke a rule by giving the OPP documents,” said Holmes.

Holmes said he’s not concerned and doesn’t believe he violated any rule.

Lenczner Slaght is representing CN Rail in the company’s civil suit against Holmes who they fired in 2008 on allegations of fraud. Holmes is countersuing them and CN police. It’s been going on for five years now without reaching trial.

The documents Holmes gave to the OPP were from nearly 40,000 documents provided by the Crown as disclosure in CN’s failed pursuit to obtain a criminal conviction for fraud, twice. The charges were stayed by the Crown.

APTN reported Tuesday that Holmes claims to have evidence to suggest CN billed GO Transit, a provincial transit company, for work CN never did.

That sparked action by the province.

Ontario Transport Minister Glen Murray said GO Transit and Metrolinx are taking the allegations “seriously” and are reviewing their books.

“I understand they have a team of auditors looking into it. These are just allegations right now; nothing has been proven,” said Murray, in a statement sent to APTN National News. “Go Transit is doing its due diligence. I want to know the facts before I comment further.”

Go Transit merged with Metrolinx in 2009.

Metrolinx said in a statement it was investigating the allegations.

“As soon as GO Transit heard about the allegations an audit was initiated as we consider the allegations serious. We will be able to respond more fully once we have more information in front of us,” said a Metrolinx spokesperson.

CN said it adamantly denies any suggestion of impropriety in its management and involvements relating to GO rail projects.

The OPP said in an emailed statement that the police force wouldn’t confirm or deny whether it has launched an investigation.

“Generally, investigations involving possible corruption can be very sensitive due to the complexity and thoroughness required to ensure that the evidence is followed,” said Sgt. Pierre Chamberland in the email. “Because of the nature of these complaints, it may not be readily apparent what investigative actions are being pursued by police in order to effectively investigate and maintain the integrity and objectivity of the investigation.”

CN said it wasn’t aware of any OPP investigation.

“CN is not aware of any investigation by the Ontario Provincial Police into such allegations,” said spokesman Mark Hallman in an emailed statement Tuesday. “CN strongly rejects any suggestion of impropriety in its management of GO rail projects.”

In its statement, CN said it employs strict accounting procedures and controls.

“Mistakes, if any, are identified and corrected. As the work performed by CN on behalf of GO on a fixed-price basis with the work approved in advance and reviewed after completion, there was no risk of GO being overcharged due to any miscoding,” said Hallman.

APTN’s story also raised allegations that CN was using partially worn material on GO projects to save cost. A GO source said they would have paid for new material.

CN said it’s a common railway practice to use partially worn material it would be “transparent” with GO on projects.

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1 thought on “CN Rail trying to 'shut up' former supervisor for giving financial documents to OPP

  1. Apart from the allegations in this story another question should be raised. Exactly why the railways and transit / passenger agencies in Canada are so secretive
    about their operating contracts.

    Claiming that these multi-million dollar disbursements are approved by Transport Canada without any need for public disclosure they are never revealed in their annual reports.

    As either a shareholder or a taxpayer they certainly have an effect on the bottom line. Yet no one’s allowed to know what they are ? !

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