Quebec TV producer Wiseman sentenced to two years less a day for touching minor

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MONTREAL — The former producer of one of Quebec's most popular television programs was sentenced Friday to two years less a day in jail and three years of probation for sexually touching a 12-year-old girl.

Luc Wiseman, 67, was also ordered to register as a sex offender for 20 years, following a sentencing hearing at the Montreal courthouse. Wiseman pleaded guilty to one count of sexual interference in July.

Quebec court Judge Pierre Labelle addressed Wiseman's victim directly as he delivered the sentence.

"There is nothing in this decision that can erase what happened," he said. "I can only hope that your suffering will diminish with time and that the people around you give you all the comfort … necessary. I also commend your courage in denouncing these acts."

The offences took place on three occasions between 2020 and 2021. Wiseman caressed and kissed the breasts of his victim and touched her vagina. The victim's identity is protected by a publication ban.

The sentence was jointly recommended by the prosecution and the defence.

Labelle said he believes that Wiseman's remorse is sincere and that there is a low risk he will reoffend. The judge said he also took Wiseman's lack of a criminal record, guilty plea and the fact that he has gone through therapy into account when deciding the sentence.

However, Labelle said that the offences have had serious consequences on the physical and psychological health of the victim, who has suffered from stress, anxiety, panic attacks and physical pain.

All sex crimes are serious, the judge said, adding that silence and passivity are not forms of consent.

"Committing such acts profoundly wounds the physical integrity of a victim," the judge said.

Wiseman, who was arrested in May 2021, was given credit for 45 days in pretrial detention. Labelle also banned Wiseman from communicating with his victim — except to write her a letter of apology — and from being near a daycare or school for five years.

Wiseman was the president of Avanti Groupe, which produces “Tout le monde en parle,” one of Quebec's most popular television shows.

He initially faced five charges — two charges were stayed, and Wiseman was acquitted of production and possession of child pornography.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 26, 2022.

Caroline Plante, The Canadian Press