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RCMP allegations ‘Most seriously damaging to public’s trust to date’: Bowman

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RCMP allegations ‘most seriously damaging to public’s trust to date’: Bowman
WATCH ABOVE: Mayor Brian Bowman is calling for an inquiry into the construction of the new Winnipeg police headquarters after court documents reveal allegation that former city CAO Phil Sheegl was paid $200,000 for helping Caspian Construction land the project. Global’s Talia Ricci reports – Jan 26, 2017

WINNIPEG — Mayor Brian Bowman is calling for a public inquiry into the construction of the new Winnipeg police headquarters after court documents revealed RCMP allegations that former city CAO Phil Sheegl was paid $200,000 for helping Caspian Construction land the project.

The court documents, obtained by Global News, also allege Sheegl appeared to have shared that money with the former mayor, Sam Katz.

RELATED: Search warrant alleges questionable ethics and relationships with mayor: Ethics professor

RCMP documents allege of the $200,000 payment, “$100,000 is believed to go to Katz benefit.”

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“This incident is the most seriously damaging to the public’s trust to date,” Bowman said at a press conference.

Bowman said he will put forward a motion within the next month at an executive policy meeting calling on the province to look into the incident.

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“I’m deeply disturbed, distressed and angered by these allegations, and all Winnipeggers should be too,” Bowman said.

“While our government understands the concerns raised by the Mayor of Winnipeg, it would be premature for the Attorney General of Manitoba to comment on an issue that remains under active criminal investigation,” Heather Stefanson, Minister of Justice and Attorney General said in a statement late Wednesday afternoon. “This is vital to ensure the integrity of the process.”

Court documents show RCMP allege the owner of Caspian Construction paid Sheegl a ‘secret commission’ for giving the company the contract to build the police headquarters.

Alleging the CAO “…did commit a breach of trust in connection with the duties of his office by accepting $200,000 for showing favor” to the owner of Caspian.

RELATED: RCMP investigating another Caspian Construction project

The lawyer representing Sheegl and Katz, Robert Tapper, denied the allegations on behalf of his clients. He said he would provide further comment Friday.

Bowman said the priority is to restore faith and trust at city hall.

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