• Carmen Marie Fabio

Former NDIP dépanneur owner guilty of sexual aggression against minors


PHOTO COURTESY SÛRETÉ DU QUÉBEC

Former Notre-Dame-de-l’Île-Perrot Dépanneur Atlantide owner Korey Foomani was found guilty of two counts of sexual aggression and sexual interference February 21 at the Valleyfield Courthouse. Foomani was arrested by Sûreté du Québec officers June 20, 2018.

The acts took place at the store over a three-year period between 2015 and 2018 in the back office and behind the front counter. of the store. The female victims were aged nine and 12 when they provided their testimony to the court. Given the age and the nature of the testimony, journalists were not permitted inside the courtroom at that time.

One of the victims was eight years of age when the first act of sexual aggression occurred according to the 27-page judgement Judge Bertrand St-Arnaud presented in the courtroom. Foomani stood before the judge, often hanging his head and appeared to be wiping his eyes.

Roughly 20 minutes into the reading of the testimony that contained graphic descriptions from the young plaintiffs, Foomani doubled over and staggered to one side. The court constable and Foomani’s wife both rushed to his side and a courtroom staffer provided him with a drink of water. Foomani’s wife wiped his face and repeatedly reassure him everything was okay.

Following a very brief pause, the judge continued though Foomani remained seated for the duration of the roughly 90-minute reading of the judgement.

St-Arnaud detailed the witness testimony of the plaintiffs, that of their parents and of their friends’ parents, and that from a former 19-year-male employee who worked at the store in 2018. The latter had told the court he had seen Foomani bring one of the girls to the office at the back of the store, reportedly to show her surveillance camera footage. Upon leaving the office, Foomani told the employee to be careful as the young girl was caught stealing candy. He also mentioned Foomani would often give children who came into the store candy or let them purchase it even if they didn’t have enough money.

The girls’ accusations, as later related to their parents and then the court, involved being placed in Foomani’s lap and feeling his penis “lifted.” Another encounter involved Foomani placing his hands inside the girl’s pants though she said he did not touch her ‘intimate’ parts.

In his defense, Foomani, represented by lawyers Jean Dury and Samantha Di Done, “…firmly denies having committed reprehensible acts against girls.” He admitted bringing one girl to the back office to show her video footage of the candy theft but Judge St-Arnaud found inconsistencies with Foomani’s description of events.

While he first claimed the girls were, “…always in the front, they never came in the back,” he later said, “It could be very possible,” the girls were in the back even though the office was not accessible to anyone who didn’t have the numeric keypad code. There was further contradiction pertaining to where one plaintiff was seated after being brought into the room – with Foomani first saying she was at the other side of the desk but later admitting she would not have been able to see the computer screen from that vantage point.

One of the victims identified a jar of candy in Foomani’s office as containing the exact same type he originally gave the girls at the front of the store. Foomani said he moved the candy jar to his office as it had expired and to remind him to speak to his supplier. Judge St-Arnaud said he found Foomani’s defense explanations both “curious and lame.”

By contrast, St-Arnaud said the girls’ accounts of the events were credible. He described them as listening attentively, never exaggerating, and generally answering questions without hesitation and that their respective accounts of events were corroborative.

Though nine of the initial 11 charges, including forcible confinement, were dropped, Crown Prosecutor Kim Émond said she was satisfied with the result.

Korey Foomani will be sentence March 6.

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