Four stories in the news for Friday, Feb. 15
TRUDEAU TO FACE NEW QUESTIONS ON SNC-LAVALIN
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is expected to face a fresh round of questions on the SNC-Lavalin controversy today when he makes an appearance at a technology firm. Trudeau will be in the Ottawa suburb of Kanata to announce support for BlackBerry. But the federal announcement is likely to be overshadowed by ongoing fallout over allegations of undue political pressure on criminal justice. Jody Wilson-Raybould resigned from the federal cabinet this week, leaving unanswered questions about whether Trudeau’s aides leaned on her to help engineering firm SNC-Lavalin avoid criminal prosecution.
ONTARIO GIRL, 11, SUBJECT OF AMBER ALERT FOUND DEAD
An 11-year-old girl who was allegedly abducted by her father and subject of an Amber Alert on Thursday night has been found dead at a home west of Toronto, police said. Peel regional police issued the alert at 11 p.m. Thursday, several hours after 41-year-old Roopesh Rajkumar failed to return his daughter, Riya, to her mother. The girl did not live with her father on a full-time basis, police said, but was dropped off at a gas station in Mississauga, Ont., at about 3 p.m. so he could take her out for her birthday. Riya was found dead around midnight, police said, and her father was arrested by provincial police a short time later about 130 kilometres north, near Orillia, Ont.
$40M IN FEDERAL MONEY GOING TO BLACKBERRY
The Liberal government is giving $40 million in federal money to BlackBerry to help the company develop self-driving car technologies. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be in Kanata, Ont., today to announce support of the one-time smartphone leader that is now working on advanced software for autonomous vehicles. BlackBerry says its QNX software is already in tens of millions of cars, guiding systems related to driver assistance, hands-free features and entertainment consoles. A government official says the federal money, to come from the Strategic Innovation Fund, will go toward software development and skills training for workers.
VODKA COMPANY BAFFLED BY ICEBERG WATER HEIST
The theft of about 30,000 litres of unbottled iceberg water from a vodka company warehouse in Newfoundland has business owners bewildered. Iceberg Vodka CEO David Meyers says he was shocked on Monday to discover a tank in the company’s warehouse in Port Union had been drained. Police are now investigating the theft that’s valued between $9,000 and $12,000. The thieves took off with enough water to fill a tractor trailer tanker — equal to about 150,000 bottles of Iceberg vodka, according to Meyers. Iceberg water is valued for its purity, and harvesting the product is a dangerous and expensive job that takes about a month to complete.
ALSO IN THE NEWS:
— A pre-trial hearing continues today in the case of Vice-Admiral Mark Norman.
— Blood spatter evidence continues today at Dennis Oland’s second-degree murder trial.
— Green Party Leader Elizabeth May will host a town hall meeting today in Halifax. It’s the sixth stop on a nationwide tour before the start of the 2019 campaign.
— Air Canada releases its full-year earnings before markets open.
The Canadian Press