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Sunday, August 31, 2014

Trudeau home break-in intruder not arrested: a drunken mistake, police say

   Canada column for Sunday, Aug. 31/14

   By Jim Fox

   An intruder who broke into Liberal leader Justin Trudeau’s Ottawa home while his family was asleep won’t face criminal charges.
   Police have determined the 19-year-old man entered the wrong house while intoxicated.
   The man went to the police after seeing video surveillance of him in Trudeau’s Rockcliffe Park neighborhood, police Staff Sergeant Kal Ghadban said.
   The intruder placed several kitchen knives on the floor pointing to a note he wrote telling them to lock their doors.
   “In his mind, he was leaving a note of apology and remorse,” Ghadban said.
   The unidentified man who has no criminal record was “formally cautioned” by police.
   The incident led to a review of security for Canada’s political leaders.
   Security protection is given to the prime minister and governor general but not to other party leaders, except during election campaigns.


   The $12-billion merger of Canada’s iconic Tim Hortons coffee shops with Burger King is viewed by analysts as a “huge win” for the Canadian chain and taxpayers.
   Canadians are being assured they won’t lose their beloved “double-doubles (coffee with two creams and two sugars) or Timbits (doughnut hole pastries).
   Burger King, owned by 3G Capital, will move its Miami headquarters to Oakville, Ontario where the Canadian corporate tax rates are about 10 points lower at around 25 percent.
   “It would create a large world-class company based in Canada, paying taxes in Canada . . . and potentially lead to more tax inversions of U.S. and foreign companies coming into Canada,” said Daniel Schwartz, CEO of Burger King.


    News in brief:
   - Two women who got into a fight after allegedly drinking and smoking in a restroom caused a Sunwing pilot to turn a Cuba-bound flight back to Toronto. The women “made a threat against the aircraft,” Sunwing's Janine Chapman said, prompting two military aircraft to escort it back. Lilia Ratmanski, 25, and Milana Muzikante, 26, were arrested upon landing.
   - Rogers Communications and Shaw Communications will launch a subscription video-on-demand service this fall to compete with Netflix. Called Shomi (pronounced Show me), it will offer 340 TV series and 1,200 movies, with 30 percent Canadian content and charge the same $8.99 fee as Netflix.
   - Marcel Masse, who played an active role in Quebec and Canadian politics from the 1960s to the 1990s, has died at age 78. He was elected to Quebec’s National Assembly for the Union Nationale in 1966 and in the 1980s was in Conservative prime minister Brian Mulroney’s cabinet.


   Facts and figures:
   Canada’s dollar has advanced to 92.02 cents U.S. while the U.S. dollar returns $1.0867 in Canadian funds, before bank exchange fees.
   The Bank of Canada’s key interest rate is steady at 1 percent while the prime-lending rate is unchanged at 3 percent.
   Stock markets are higher, with the Toronto exchange index at 15,632 points and the TSX Venture index at 1,021 points.
   The average price of a liter of gasoline in Canada is up at $1.3004 (Canadian).
   Lotto 6-49: (Aug. 27) 20, 21, 34, 42, 44 and 45; bonus 35. (Aug. 23) 10, 17, 24, 28, 31 and 46; bonus 15. Lotto Max: (Aug. 22) 13, 16, 22, 26, 35, 36 and 39; bonus 44.


   Regional briefs:
   - Fifty-six tourists were injured when their bus crashed in a mountain pass on the Coquihalla Highway northeast of Vancouver. Police said 21 passengers had serious injuries when the bus rolled over. The trip was organized by Chinese tour operator Super Vacation of Richmond.
   - NextEra Energy Resources of Juno Beach, Florida is looking for additional opportunities to establish wind farms in Ontario. It has already built three wind farms at a cost of $500 million and is working on two more. The company has solar and wind projects in Ontario, Alberta, Quebec and Nova Scotia.
   - Toronto Mayor Rob Ford sang and danced his way through the last city council meeting before the October election. At the lunch break, a Jamaican singer arrived and Ford jumped up to a reggae version of Hallelujah. The embattled mayor, who recently returned from rehab for addiction issues, is regaining his popularity and is now second in the polls for re-election.


Jim Fox can be reached at canadareport@hotmail.com

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