Thursday, November 29, 2018


   At 2:07 p.m. on Nov. 17, 2015, a public servant named Matthew Matchett emailed a prominent Ottawa lobbyist to relay some exciting news.
   “I got everything — the motherload,” Matchett’s email said. But it also said his BlackBerry phone was “caput,” and he needed to know where to drop off the material.
   One minute later came the response: “Here if ok,” wrote Brian Mersereau of the public relations and lobbying firm Hill+Knowlton Strategies, which had Quebec-based Davie Shipbuilding as a major client. “Just leave it at front. Lots of funny folks wandering around.”
   Mersereau would later tell an RCMP investigator that when he arrived the next day at his office on Metcalfe Street, there was a package in a brown envelope waiting for him. Inside were documents that were to be presented at a meeting on Nov. 19, 2015, where a federal cabinet committee would debate the future of a $700-million project to acquire a supply ship for the navy from Davie. The RCMP would seize the documents, including a PowerPoint presentation deck and a memorandum to cabinet, in a raid of Mersereau’s office six months later.

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