December 6, 2018 5:37 pm
Updated: December 6, 2018 9:21 pm

Former Laval mayor Gilles Vaillancourt granted full parole

Former Laval mayor Gilles Vaillancourt was sentenced to six years in prison in December 2016.

Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press
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After nearly two years behind bars, Former Laval mayor Gilles Vaillancourt has been granted full parole.

The Parole Board of Canada issued the decision Thursday, saying it had “no other choice” but to grant Vaillancourt his liberty.

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

“The parole board is satisfied that there are no reasonable grounds to believe that, if full parole is ordered, you will commit a violent offense prior to the expiration of your sentence,” it wrote.

Known as the King of Laval, Vaillancourt served as the city’s mayor for 23 years from 1989 until 2012, when he resigned amid corruption allegations.

A few months later, he was arrested as part of a sweep by the province’s anti-corruption squad in May 2013. Vaillancourt was accused of taking part in a scheme in which city hall awarded municipal contracts in exchange for donations and bribes from construction contractors.

In December 2016, Vaillancourt pleaded guilty to charges of fraud, breach of trust and conspiracy.  Under a joint Crown-defence agreement, He was sentenced to six years in prison and ordered to reimburse the city about $8.6 million.

READ MORE: Former Laval mayor Gilles Vaillancourt sentenced after pleading guilty to fraud

Vaillancourt, 77, had been staying at a halfway home for the past year after he was granted day parole. The parole board described the former mayor as “polite, open, transparent and voluble in his interactions with employees.”

In its six-page decision, the board also noted Vaillancourt showed good behaviour during that time.

WATCH: Former Laval mayor Gilles Vaillancourt sentenced (2016)

While Vaillancourt has now been granted full parole, he must respect certain conditions, including divulging all financial information required to satisfy his parole officer.

He is also barred from getting involved in paid or volunteer activities in the political sphere. Vaillancourt is also prohibited from overseeing the finances or investments of individuals, companies or charities.

— With files from the Canadian Press

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