Former Laval mayor Gilles Vaillancourt sentenced after pleading guilty to fraud

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WATCH ABOVE: Quebec Superior Court Justice James Brunton has sentenced former Laval mayor Gilles Vaillancourt to six years, minus the time he already served, after pleading guilty to charges of fraud, breach of trust and conspiracy. Global's Gloria Henriquez reports – Dec 16, 2016

Former Laval mayor Gilles Vaillancourt has been sentenced to six years in prison, minus the time he has already served.

He pleaded guilty to charges of fraud, breach of trust and conspiracy between 1996 and 2010.

The gangsterism charges were dropped.

READ MORE: Former Laval mayor Gilles Vaillancourt pleads guilty to fraud, gangsterism charges dropped

“I deeply regret the mistakes and mostly the pain imposed on my family, friends and citizens of Laval,” he told the court on Dec. 1.

“I feel great pain and this will likely be with me until I die. I excuse myself sincerely.”

The Crown and the defence had agreed on the six-year prison sentence.

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READ MORE: Members of Gilles Vaillancourt’s ‘inner circle’ ready to testify against former mayor

Quebec Superior Court Justice James Brunton approved the deal.

READ MORE: Laval mayor promises to crack down on corruption

The 75-year old was told he would also have to reimburse $9 million, including $5.23 million from a Swiss bank account and his $1-million condo.

“I want to serve my sentence as soon as possible so I can become an active member of society once again,” said Vaillancourt.

WATCH BELOW: Laval mayor pleads guilty

Click to play video: 'Laval mayor pleads guilty' Laval mayor pleads guilty
Laval mayor pleads guilty – Dec 1, 2016

Cracking down on corruption

Vaillancourt was arrested along with 37 other people by Quebec’s anti-corruption squad in May 2013 during a police operation at his home, condo, offices and bank safety-deposit boxes.

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Police said the former mayor and a number of construction bosses worked together to fix the awarding of public contracts in Laval for years.

READ MORE: Quebec corruption inquiry ends after 30 months of public hearings

Vaillancourt originally faced 12 charges of gangsterism, conspiracy, fraud, breach of trust, bribery, favouritism, corruption and collusion.

He had served 23 years as the city’s mayor, from 1989 to 2012.

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