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Suspect arrested after documents stolen from Quebec immigration minister's car

Last Updated Nov 14, 2019 at 2:37 pm EST

Quebec Minister of Immigration, Diversity and Inclusiveness Simon Jolin-Barrette speaks at a news conference at the legislature in Quebec City on March 28, 2019. The bad news for Quebec's immigration minister continues to pile up with the news documents he forgot in his government vehicle were stolen from the parking lot of a legislative building. Minister Simon Jolin-Barrette confirmed to reporters today the files taken from his car were working documents and they weren't confidential. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jacques Boissinot

QUEBEC — A rough stretch for Quebec immigration minister’s continues with news that documents he left in his government vehicle were stolen this week.

Simon Jolin-Barrette told reporters today the files taken from his car in a government parking lot were working documents and not confidential.

Earlier, provincial police said they had arrested a male suspect in connection with the theft, which they say occurred around 11:45 p.m. Wednesday. The force’s major crimes unit has taken over the case.

Police say the suspect had no ties to the vehicle’s owner, and they believe he had tried to break in to several cars in search of money.

Jolin-Barrette has had a difficult two weeks following an ill-fated immigration reform that he was forced to suspend and for which he publicly apologized on Tuesday.

Premier Francois Legault downplayed accusations from the opposition that his minister was negligent for leaving the documents in the car, confirming the papers inside the vehicle did not contain confidential information.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 14, 2019.

The Canadian Press