March 3rd, 2024

Quebec man suspected of killing 9-year-old suing police, eager to clear name: lawyer

By The Canadian Press on January 22, 2024.

Jonathan Bettez is shown at court in Montreal on Monday, Jan. 22, 2024. The lawyer for Bettez, a Quebec man who provincial police say remains a suspect in the disappearance and death of a young girl 16 years ago, says he is eager to testify in a lawsuit against the authorities. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sidhartha Banerjee

MONTREAL – The lawyer for a Quebec man who police say is a suspect in the disappearance and death of a young girl 16 years ago says his client is eager to clear his name.

Jonathan Bettez is at the Montreal courthouse today for a hearing regarding his $10-million lawsuit he filed against the provincial police in 2019 for targeting him in the homicide case.

Bettez is considered a suspect in the 2007 disappearance of nine-year-old Cédrika Provencher in Trois-Rivières, Que., about halfway between Montreal and Quebec City.

Provencher’s skeletal remains were discovered in December 2015 but no one has been charged in her killing – and Bettez’s lawyer says his client is innocent.

Bettez and his lawyer Jessy Héroux were in court today arguing that their lawsuit against the police should be heard in public.

Lawyers for the Quebec government told the court that legal proceedings should be heard behind closed doors because some information could hurt the ongoing homicide investigation.

Quebec provincial police investigators told the court today that Bettez remains a suspect in Provencher’s disappearance because they have been unable to clear him.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 22, 2024.

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