Back to court: Simon Jolin-Barrette throws spades at the chief judge

Back to court: Simon Jolin-Barrette throws spades at the Chief Justice


In the midst of the election campaign, the Minister of Justice Simon Jolin-Barrette took advantage of the return to court in Montreal to launch spades at the Chief Justice of the Court of Quebec on cases that oppose them before the courts..

“Even the most skeptical cannot deny the vulnerability of the French language in Quebec. The justice system is an integral part of the Quebec state and must in this sense do its fair share to protect and preserve it,” the minister said Thursday during a speech to the legal community at the Montreal courthouse.


This remark echoes his bickering with Chief Justice Lucie Rondeau, unhappy that he is trying to ban the quasi-systematic requirement bilingualism for magistrates.

Viting the achievements of the Coalition Avenir Québec, Mr. Jolin-Barrette then praised the creation of specialized courts for sexual and domestic violence.

“We feel a real commitment to this project,” he said, not without ignoring that the Chief Justice had strongly opposed it.

Immediately after, the politician launched an appeal to reduce the delays in the court, while he is currently in a showdown with Ms. Rondeau who wishes to reduce the task of the magistrates. Two months ago, the politician said that this decision “goes against the efforts that are being made […] to make the judicial system more efficient”.

Media attacked

The Chief Justice, for her part, preferred to use her platform to express her two main concerns about the justice system: decorum before the courts and media coverage.

“It is noticeable that the harsh media treatment both in traditional and social media towards court judges and court decisions is increasing,” she said.

She was referring, without naming him, to the case of Judge Matthieu Poliquin, who granted a discharge to Simon Houle, an engineer guilty of sexual assault.

“We still have […] We have our work cut out for our citizens, our fellow citizens, I apologize, to better control the functioning of our system, ”she said, thanking many speakers but not Simon Jolin-Barrette.

This speech contrasted with that of the new Chief Justice of the Superior Court of Quebec, Marie-Anne Paquette, who expressed concern about the shortage of manpower causing “real breakdowns in service, which have real impact on people's lives. She then thanked the professional journalists who fight against misinformation.

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