Police are investigating four separate acts of vandalism overnight that targeted the Montreal offices of several high-ranking government officials.
Things got started just after 3 a.m. when someone smashed a window at 750 Marcel Laurin Blvd., a building which currently houses the offices of Quebec Justice Minister Jean-Marc Fournier. Several bottles which “looked like Molotov cocktails” were thrown inside, said Montreal police Constable Yannick Ouimet.
No fire was started, however.
About 15 minutes later, another window was broken and similar bottles were thrown inside the building located at 3269 St. Jacques St., which houses the office of St. Henri MNA and Liberal minister responsible for seniors, Marguerite Blais. In addition to the broken glass, police found graffiti painted on the building and the sidewalk.
Again, there was no fire.
At 4 a.m., a third building - this time the office of Quebec Finance Minister Raymond Bachand located at 5450 Côte des Neiges Rd. - was vandalized. The culprits used red spray paint to deface the side of the building, but there were no broken windows or other damages at that location, Ouimet confirmed.
“It was red squares that were painted,” he added.
Finally, just after 4 a.m., police were called to the offices of Minister of Labour Lise Thériault, located at 7077 Beaubien St. East.
“It was the same modus operandi,” said Ouimet. “Broken windows, bottles and graffiti.”
A window at the front of the building at 7171 Beaubien St. East was also smashed. Police believe that the vandals originally mistook it for Thériault’s office, located just down the street.
No fires were started at any of the locations, but because of the presence of what appeared to be Molotov cocktails, the police arson squad was called in to investigate.
The nature of the targets and the presence of the red squares suggest a link to recent student protests against the Liberal government’s plan to raise tuition fees in the province, but police are not laying the blame for the damage at the feet of any particular organization or group in the city.
In an interview on French television channel LCN early Monday, Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, a leader with the Coalition large de l’association pour une solidarité syndicale étudiante (CLASSE), said that his organization had nothing to do with the attacks.
No injuries were reported, and no arrests had been made in connection with any of the incidents as of 5:30 a.m.