Enrico Ciccone’s office vandalized, Marwah Rizqy threatened with death

Enrico Ciccone’s office vandalized, Marwah Rizqy threatened with death

The constituency office of Marquette MP Enrico Ciccone was vandalized and then robbed in Lachine overnight Tuesday into Wednesday. A police investigation was launched as the incident happened just days after death threats were made against another elected Liberal, Marwah Rizqy.

Posted 1:24pm Updated 4:03pm

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Henri Ouellette-Vezina

Henri Ouellette-Vézina La Presse

“I am upset and concerned, especially for my staff and the citizens who trust us. A district office is the home of the citizens. It should be untouchable. We are here to serve the people,” the key figure denounced on Wednesday, saying he was still in shock.

To get into the office, the thieves “broke down the adjacent wall of a neighboring store,” the Liberal Party claims, adding that the criminals also “did great material damage before escaping.”

According to our information, all employees’ computers were stolen and locked filing cabinets were broken into. Confidential material about employees, but also voters, could have been stolen. A server that records video footage from surveillance cameras was also stolen.

During the passage of La Presse on Wednesday, Mr Ciccone met with investigators from the Service de Police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM) to take stock of the situation.

Rizqy also threatened

Just a few days ago, a man had also left a message on the mailbox of Enrico Ciccone’s constituency office, but also on the MP’s Facebook page, with “threatening” statements against Liberal MP for Saint-Laurent, Marwah Rizqy. who is eight months pregnant. He would then have mentioned that “your amazing friend Marwah is dead and buried”.

Enrico Ciccones office vandalized Marwah Rizqy threatened with death

PHOTO JACQUES BOISSINOT, THE CANADIAN PRESS

The Liberal MP for Saint-Laurent, Marwah Rizqy, alongside their leader Dominique Anglade

Police are investigating whether these two cases could be linked, but nothing is certain at this point. One thing is certain: the man behind the threats against Marwah Rizqy, Claude Delaney, will face criminal harassment charges against Ms Rizqy between September 1, 2021 and August 25. During an appearance last Friday, Delaney pleaded not guilty and was then released on conditions including not approaching the congressman.

“It started with me telling myself I had better walk faster or I would die. Back then it was just a message. But it stayed. He even called my neighborhood station to tell them a murder was about to be committed, to go get my body. It was an uproar for my loved ones and me. We didn’t know where it came from, who it was. I can’t remember the last time I got down on my knees like that,” says Ms. Rizqy.

She is calling for the National Assembly to introduce “better security mechanisms” such as a “panic button” that would allow elected officials to signal a request for immediate action by sharing their geolocation. “Since my case was urgent, I was entitled to a police escort, which gave me peace of mind. But that’s not always the case,” notes the Liberal.

to have a debate

During a press conference on Wednesday, Liberal leader Dominique Anglade acknowledged that a debate should be held on the safety of elected officials. “These are questions that deserve to be raised in the current context. We saw what happened to Enrico, we saw what happened to Marwah. […] We want to make sure we can campaign in a non-violent context,” she said, arguing that everyone “has a role to play in order to reduce tension levels.”

Additionally, La Presse reported on Tuesday that security around party leaders is more visible than in previous elections, a sign authorities are aware of the risk of overcrowding.

1661976496 992 Enrico Ciccones office vandalized Marwah Rizqy threatened with death

PHOTO OLIVIER JEAN, THE PRESS

The leader of the Parti Québécois, Paul St-Pierre Plamondon

Even bulletproof vests were distributed by the Sûreté du Québec at the start of the election campaign, PQ leader Paul St-Pierre Plamondon had revealed, recalling the attack on Ms Marois, which took place in the Métropolis on the night of the election, in the same reason 2012, an attack that left one dead and one injured.

Québec solidaire co-spokesman Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois also said that he “noticed a significant increase in threats of all kinds being elected over the past two, three years.”

With Tommy Chouinard, La Presse