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Owners of pyrrhotite-damaged homes in Quebec demand money from SNC-Lavalin settlement

In this July 1, 2019 photo, contractor Don Childree holds a piece of concrete containing the brownish iron sulfide called pyrrhotite that he pulled from the crumbling foundation of a home.
In this July 1, 2019 photo, contractor Don Childree holds a piece of concrete containing the brownish iron sulfide called pyrrhotite that he pulled from the crumbling foundation of a home. Ted Shaffrey/AP Photo

Owners of pyrrhotite-damaged homes in Quebec are eyeing the $280-million penalty SNC-Lavalin was recently ordered to pay for its fraudulent business dealings in Libya.

Alain Gélinas, president of a group of owners whose homes have been damaged by the mineral, says that settlement money belongs to his members.

READ MORE: Ottawa to spend $30M on helping Quebec homeowners who have pyrrhotite

Hundreds of homes in Quebec’s Mauricie region were damaged after being built between 1996-2008 with low-quality concrete that contained pyrrhotite, which expands when it comes into contact with water and air.

Trudeau says SNC-Lavalin plea a positive outcome
Trudeau says SNC-Lavalin plea a positive outcome

In 2014, the Quebec Superior Court ruled that SNC-Lavalin was 70 per cent responsible for the damage because one of the company’s geologists produced a report stating the concrete was fit for use.

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READ MORE: SNC-Lavalin pleads guilty to fraud charges

SNC-Lavalin is appealing that ruling and Gélinas says a decision in the case is expected in early 2020.

In the meantime, he’s calling on the federal government to set aside the $280-million the company was recently ordered to pay in a separate case involving its fraudulent dealings in Libya, and give it to the victims of pyrrhotite-damaged homes.