NEWS

Arthur Porter's death confirmed by UPAC investigators

07/07/2015 03:53 EDT | Updated 07/07/2016 05:59 EDT
The former head of the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) has been confirmed dead by Quebec investigators. 

Porter's family told CBC News he died on June 30 in Panama, where he was being held in prison while fighting extradition to Canada to face charges linked to a $22.5-million kickback scheme.

However, that news was treated with skepticism by Quebec authorities.

Last week, the prosecutor handling the multi-million dollar fraud case involving the former MUHC CEO said she wanted Quebec police to verify that he is actually dead.

The province's anti-corruption squad (UPAC) dispatched two investigators to Panama last Friday. 

UPAC head Robert Lafrenière confirmed in a news release that investigators saw his body in a Panamanian morgue. 

"The visual identification of the body of Arthur Porter is sufficient enough to formally assure us of his death," he said. 

Porter's fingerprints and a DNA sample were also taken "to remove any doubt," according to UPAC.

No formal request to repatriate Porter's remains will be made.

The former CEO of the McGill University Health Centre was charged with fraud and money-laundering in connection with the contract to build the health centre's new superhospital.

Porter also formerly served on the Security Intelligence Review Committee, the oversight body for Canada's spy agency, CSIS.

He was named to the committee by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in 2008 and later elevated to chairperson before resigning in December 2011.

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