In my mind, the case had long been closed: Normand Dubé, aka "the star pilot", sabotaged Hydro-Quebec power lines with his plane and left 180,000 people in the dark.
The court ruled in this sense in September 2018, estimating that this criminal capable of anything to achieve his ends deserved 7 years in prison.
Dubé did not help his case afterwards. He was sentenced to 9 years in prison for ordering arson. He also led a run, starting in December 2020, which made him one of the ten most wanted criminals in Quebec.
He will rot behind bars for a long time.
And yet, listening to the first episodes of the new podcast For Pure Revenge, produced by our Bureau of Investigation, doubt resurfaced in my mind. What if we still didn't know anything about this case?
The first two episodes have already been broadcast since Tuesday on QUB.ca. But I can already tell you that you can't wait to hear volume 3, starting next Tuesday.
In this episode, journalist Marie-Christine Noël and director Anne-Sophie Carpentier explore the star pilot's main alibi: according to him, it was his friend Steve Garrett who sabotaged the high-voltage lines with his helicopter.
Me Baribeau says just the opposite and swears he was taken by surprise by this version. “Never Mr. Dubé or his lawyer informed us of this element. […] If they had done it, we would have met him, Mr. Garrett ”, swears Me Baribeau in the podcast.
So much so that the Crown prosecutor does not "remember" if any checks were made to determine if Steve Garrett had indeed flown over the areas where the sabotages occurred...
What we do know, however, is that no device other than that of Mr. Dubé went through this on the day of the breakdowns.
And to add to the mystery, Steve Garrett tragically committed suicide at the age of 32 on the first day of Normand Dubé's trial, and will therefore never be able to enlighten us.
Much of the trial was held in complete secrecy – even the public and journalists had to leave the room when certain so-called “national security” elements were presented to the judge.
In the end, the Crown's thesis that Dubé perpetrated these crimes out of revenge was upheld by the judge. The pilot had indeed waged a long legal battle against Hydro, which originated in a trivial case of encroachment of a few meters on his land in Sainte-Anne-des-Plaines.
This ascent is recounted in the podcast, which also presents a rare unfiltered testimony from Lieutenant Martin Bouchard, who led the Sûreté du Québec investigation.
The Normand Dubé case is certainly one of the most fascinating and mysterious criminal sagas of the last decade. And with the podcast Par pure vengeance, we haven't finished hearing about it.
Good listening !