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Prosecutors won’t appeal acquittals of Quebec media stars Rozon, Salvail after cases reviewed

Just for Laughs founder Gilbert Rozon walks the hall of the courthouse as he arrives for the beginning of his sexual assault trial in Montreal on Tuesday, October 13, 2020. Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press

The Crown says it won’t appeal the acquittals in the cases of Quebec media stars Gilbert Rozon and Eric Salvail.

A spokeswoman for the director of criminal and penal prosecutions made the announcements in a series of tweets and says the decision in the Rozon case is based on an assessment of the evidence and the fact that an appeal cannot be made on a question of fact.

Read more: ‘Just for Laughs’ founder Gilbert Rozon found not guilty on charges of rape, indecent assault

The 66-year-old Rozon, founder of the Just for Laughs festival, had been accused of rape and indecent assault in charges dating back 40 years, but was acquitted on Dec. 15 by Quebec court Judge Melanie Hebert.

Click to play video: 'Just For Laughs founder’s trial draws protesters' Just For Laughs founder’s trial draws protesters
Just For Laughs founder’s trial draws protesters – Nov 6, 2020

In her decision, Hebert wrote that acquittal didn’t mean the alleged incidents didn’t occur or that the victim was not credible but that the case was not proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

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Read more: Quebec media star Éric Salvail not guilty on sex charges

In the Salvail case, spokeswoman Audrey Roy-Cloutier said the department carried out an exhaustive analysis of the decision and, given that the verdict hinged on witness credibility and prosecutors found no error of law, there would not be an appeal.

The former television personality was acquitted on Dec. 18 on charges of sexual assault, forcible confinement and criminal harassment related to an alleged incident in 1993.

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