NDP MP details harassment allegations: ‘It was sex without explicit
The NDP MP who brought forward allegations of
sexual misconduct involving Liberal colleagues says Montreal MP Massimo
Pacetti forced himself on her in his hotel room earlier this year.
Liberal MPs Scott Andrews, left, and Massimo
Pacetti are facing allegations of personal misconduct that were brought
forward by a New Democrat MP.
Democrat MP who brought forward allegations of sexual
misconduct involving Liberal colleagues says Montreal MP
Massimo Pacetti forced himself on her in his hotel room
earlier this year.
“It was sex
without explicit consent,” the female NDP MP told the Star
in an interview Tuesday on the condition she would not be
The NDP MP
decided to speak to the media this week about the
allegations of “personal misconduct” that prompted Liberal
Leader Justin Trudeau to
suspend Pacetti and Newfoundland MP Scott Andrews from
the Liberal caucus Nov. 5.
and Pacetti have denied any wrongdoing.
francophone MP from Quebec told the Star she knew Pacetti
from a sports league and that they would often join other
members for drinks after games. One night in March while
returning from the bar after a game, the MP recalled, she
agreed to join Pacetti for a drink in his hotel room.
“I was sitting
on one of the chairs at the side of the room. We were
talking a little bit and at one point he said, ‘Just come to
sit beside me,’ tapping his bed at the same time.”
She said she declined and then
excused herself to the bathroom, where she thought about what she should do
next because he had made it clear he wanted more from her than friendship.
“I just thought I should
leave, just drink my glass (quickly) and say, ‘I think I better go’ . . .
but when I walked back to my chair, when I passed beside the bed, he grabbed
me and I froze after that,” she said.
“I was afraid that things
would get worse,” she added, explaining that she had been sexually assaulted
when she was a teenager and the similarity between the two situations made
her feel unable to act.
She said she did not want to
go into more details of what happened next, but described it as “sex without
In an emailed statement,
Pacetti said he was innocent and that he was “troubled that the complainant
chose to air these allegations in the media as this is inconsistent with
statements conveyed through her party that privacy and fairness must be
respected for both sides.”
“As with media reports of this
nature, in this instance many questions remain unanswered and there is no
way to evaluate the veracity of the claims being made,” Pacetti added.
“If need be, this matter
should go through
confidential process mediated by an independent third party as was
proposed by the Speaker of the House of Commons. Canadian standards of
fairness and the presumption of innocence can then be maintained to arrive
at the truth.”
Andrews has also maintained he
did nothing wrong and he did not respond to another request for comment
The NDP MP said she “did not
think that much” before approaching Trudeau on Oct. 28, when she shared
allegations involving Andrews and a second NDP MP. The MP and the Liberal
leader were travelling on a bus together the day of the funeral for Cpl.
Nathan Cirillo in Hamilton.
She said she thought she could
avoid the issue becoming “politicized” by speaking directly to him,
explaining that she had no “specific expectations” but felt it was important
for him to know someone in his caucus was behaving inappropriately.
She said she was concerned
other women would be hurt.
She said she did not confide
in Trudeau about her own allegations involving Pacetti, but said she did
bring it up when she and the other NDP MP met Liberal whip Judy Foote and
NDP whip Nycole Turmel to discuss the complaint involving Andrews.
After that night in March, the
NDP MP said she and Pacetti had no further contact beyond small talk when
they ran into each other and that she took some time off to deal with the
The NDP MP said that while she
believes it was “appropriate” for the whips to meet and for Foote to ask
Commons Speaker Andrew Scheer to help them figure out, in the absence of a
policy, how to proceed with complaints between MPs, she believes Trudeau
acted too quickly in suspending Pacetti and Andrews before hearing back from
“I think it was too fast for
him to act like that,” she said.
She said she has no plans to
go to police — her decision to file a complaint with police about the sexual
assault she experienced as a teenager resulted in police warning her that
her credibility would be called into question in the “he said, she said”
She said she remains open to
participating in an investigation by an independent third party so long as
the process is confidential.
“If someone broke my
confidentiality I would have to live with that for the rest of my life,” she
said, saying she feels her mental health deteriorate for a couple of days
every time she has to talk about it.
“If it is always coming back,
I don’t think it would help me to heal,” she said.
As for Pacetti, she said: “if
he is ready to give me a sincere apology, if he understands how he made me
feel, and I feel that he is sincere and he engaged himself to getting help
and mental therapy, I feel for myself it would be enough”.
Trudeau told reporters the
Liberals have begun looking for a third party to review the allegations and
provide on what happened in the absence of the two NDP MPs participating
with an investigation.
A Liberal party source said
the matters will be looked at as complaints of workplace harassment in the
absence of the NDP MPs being willing to take part in any formal complaint.
And the question of whether
the MPs are readmitted to caucus or allowed to stand as Liberal candidates
in the next election will be dealt with under the party’s “green-light
committee” — which may accept or reject candidates who wish to run under the
Liberal banner. Trudeau would still have final say as leader however, the
With files from Tonda
New allegations emerge in
case involving MP Scott Andrews
New information has emerged
about the allegations of misconduct made against MP Scott Andrews.
After one of the women
complained directly to the Liberal leader late last month, both women agreed
to meet confidentially with Liberal whip Judy Foote and her NDP counterpart,
Nycole Turmel, to detail their allegations.
Multiple sources familiar with
what was said during those meetings have spoken to The Canadian Press.
According to the sources, the
incident involving Andrews allegedly started at a social event on Parliament
Hill. They say Andrews, the woman involved in the allegations against him
and Pacetti went from the event to Pacetti’s office, where they drank some
wine. Eventually, Pacetti left, leaving Andrews and the woman alone.
According to sources, the
woman alleges that Andrews followed her home, forced his way through her
door, pushed her against a wall, groped her and ground his pelvis against
her. She ordered him to leave. He did.
Afterwards, sources say the
woman alleges that Andrews repeatedly verbally harassed her, calling her a
Andrews has denied any
misconduct but sources say he has not yet given a detailed rebuttal to the
In an email, lawyer Chris
MacLeod, who is representing Andrews, said the MP was not provided with “any
details of the internal summary or any documentation from the Liberal
caucus” about the complaint against him.
“He is in no position to
respond to an unknown allegation,” MacLeod told The Canadian Press.
“Any allegation of misconduct
on his part is untrue, and any reporting of the same will be considered
libel on the part of you and your office.”
The Canadian Press
Commentary by the Ottawa Mens Centre
You can understand why the Star won't allow comment on this story but
the reality is, this is "she said" story that has no corroboration
and is unsubstantiated.
It also begs the question as to how or why a very strong female
personality engaged in sex without consent. She admits she had sex with
him and now claims that it was "without consent" and that he forced
himself on her.
Rape is Rape. Exactly what allegation is she making? There is nothing
in her story of her telling him no, no, leave the room.
Both these allegations are unproven and will be career destroying.
What is disturbing, is she will settle for an admission, an apology,
and that is tantamount to an admission of rape. If he says anything
including a denial, it will feed the feminist fury.
Allegations are very easy to make, proving them and or disproving
them are more often than not impossible.
Society cannot and should not believe every female allegation simply
because of the gender of the complainant.
Ottawa Mens Centre