THE FORMER CHAIRMAN of the company which brokered the sale of 34 Airbus A320s to Air Canada has said that he set up a Swiss bank account to funnel Airbus kickback money to former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney. Mulroney denies the bribery allegation and has filed a C$50 million ($37 million) libel suit against the Canadian Government, which the Government says it will contest.

Speaking on a Canadian television programme, former International Aircraft Leasing (IAL) chairman Georgio Pelossi said that he opened two numbered accounts for Canadian lobbyist Frank Moores and claims that he was told that one of the accounts was for Mulroney.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police is investigating allegations of an agreement between Airbus and IAL requiring a secret side payment of $500,000 per aircraft sold to Air Canada. The C$1.8 million aircraft deal was signed in 1988.

Source: Flight International