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The World

January 10, 1988

Two Canadian Cabinet ministers were convicted of contempt of court in a case involving the actions of their subordinates in an immigration dispute. If the decision by the Federal Court of Appeal stands, it could mean Cabinet ministers would be held personally accountable for actions of their staffs. Overturning a lower court ruling, Justice John J. Urie said External Affairs Minister Joe Clark and Flora MacDonald, former immigration minister and now communications minister, were responsible for the failure of their staffs to produce a visa file in a 1985 immigration case. That case involved the efforts of an Ontario woman, Debora Bhatnager, to bring her husband Ajay Kant Bhatnager to Canada from India as a permanent resident.

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