Former Mayor Michael Applebaum left Montreal’s courthouse without speaking to reporters Thursday after making his first public appearance since his arrest and resignation last year.
Mr. Applebaum stepped down in June following his arrest on 14 criminal charges including conspiracy, corruption and breach of trust. He maintained his innocence and vowed to clear his name.
Mr. Applebaum’s court hearing Thursday morning was delayed because lawyers for his two co-accused, Saulie Zajdel and Jean-Yves Bisson, were not present in court.
Mr. Applebaum was represented by noted Montreal defence lawyer Jean-Claude Hébert.
Mr. Applebaum had been interim mayor for only seven months when he was forced to resign last year, the second mayor to leave under a cloud in less than a year. His predecessor, Gérald Tremblay, stepped down amid disclosures over illegal fundraising practices.
The charges against Mr. Applebaum are in connection with two real-estate transactions dating to when he was mayor of a west-end borough of Montreal.
Mr. Applebaum’s arrest and resignation came during a tumultuous period in Montreal marked by a wave of revelations related to municipal corruptions.
The former mayor and the two others return to court Mar. 10.