04/27/2012 12:16 EDT | Updated 06/27/2012 05:12 EDT

RCMP ordered to release Mafia evidence to inquiry

A Quebec Superior Court judge has ordered the RCMP to hand over documents to the province's commission investigating allegations of collusion and corruption in the construction industry.

The RCMP had tried to block the Charbonneau commission from getting access to the documents, relating to Operation Colisée, a police probe that concluded in 2006 and is considered the largest such investigation into the Mob in Canadian history.

The RCMP argued it was not obliged to share the information and had to protect the confidentiality of witnesses. The RCMP also argued that it would simply be too onerous to transmit the thousands of documents.

However Friday morning, the judge ruled the commission could gain access to the documents.

The judge said during Operation Colisée, the RCMP managed to provide the information to defence lawyers, so it should also be able to do so for the commission.

The inquiry, headed by Quebec Superior Court Justice France Charbonneau, is to begin hearing from witnesses this fall.

The commission is already doing preliminary work, such as gathering evidence.