Montreal police chief Yvan Delorme testified Friday morning before a City Hall committee about his connections to BCIA, security firms in the city, and whether he took any role in awarding contracts.

"My intent is to reassure citizens about the integrity of awarding contracts at city hall," said Delorme, who added that he has never taken advantage of his position to ensure one firm in particular gets security contracts.

However Delorme freely admitted to knowing BCIA owner and CEO Luigi Corretti, as well as the owners of other private security firms that operate in the region.

"Evidently I know almost all of them. If I did not, I would not be able to do my job," Delorme said.

During his testimony, Delorme bombarded the committee with a rundown of all his interactions regarding BCIA, and the exact dates all decisions were made with regards to a contract to provide security at several buildings in Montreal, including police headquarters.

Delorme acknowledged that no elected officials ever voted on the 2006 contract, and said that he never performed a background check on BCIA's owner.

He admits that if he had, he would have discovered that Corretti had previously declared bankruptcy twice.

Committee members asked Delorme about why he chose to announce his resignation in May, and he replied that it had no connection to BCIA whatsoever.

Delorme said that after working hard his whole life, he felt he deserved to retire at age 47, despite recently being offered a generous pension bonus in exchange for a three-year contract extension.

Questions of integrity

City hall has been facing numerous allegations of irregularities and improper dealings with contracts for years.

Most recently, the city's auditor-general, Jacques Bergeron, tabled a report in May indicating there are significant issues with the process that led to now-bankrupt security firm BCIA being granted a contract to provide security services for the municipal courthouse, Montreal police headquarters, and another police building.

Bergeron found the security contract was awarded without a bidding process.