Famed crime reporter Michel Auger, who survived assassination attempt, dies

Journal de Montreal reporter Michel Auger holds up a copy of a magazine with his photo on the cover recuperating in hospital after he was shot following published stories on the Hells Angels biker gang, as he recounts his ordeal at a panel discussion in Ottawa Wednesday Dec 6, 2000. (CP PHOTO/Tom Hanson)

Journalist Michel Auger, who was renowned for his crime reporter and for surviving an assassination attempt, has died.

Auger began his career at the Trois-Rivieres Nouvelliste in 1964. He then worked at Montreal-Matin and La Presse before moving to the Journal de Montreal.

He dedicated much of his career to reporting on organized crime. In the 1990s, he published numerous reports on the rivalries between various motorcycle gangs, a touchy subject that nearly cost him his life.

On Sept. 13, 2000, while going to the Journal de Montreal's offices, he was shot six times in the back. He survived and later wrote about the experience in his autobiography, 'L'attentat.'

After more than 40 years in the industry, Auger retired in 2006.

He had been granted numerous honours, including receiving the Judith-Jasmin Hommage award in 2013, as well as the Canadian Journalism Foundation's Career Coronation Award. In 2000, the International Union of the Francophone Press awarded him their prize for free expression.

Shortly after the attack, Auger received the Medal of the National Assembly.

“Your courage and your refusal to remain silent inspires us and encourages us to reiterate our determination to build a tolerant society, free from violence,” then-Premier Lucien Bouchard said at the time. 

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