Friday, November 17, 2006
CRIMINAL Court Lists explained ...
I asked Randy at House of Infamy and I asked Bill Tieleman if they could explain the absence of Basi, Virk, Basi (BVB) from the Supreme Court Lists on the days they were expected to appear at pre-trial hearings. And why "John Doe" was listed. Randy, a programmer, had the same experience as I had. Like me, Randy went to the Attorney General Home Page, selected Criminal Court Lists, and had no reason to question the lists which were headed up:
Court Services Online
Daily Court Lists
Court List Index
And Randy provided a copy of that pdf page of 30 Oct. for Bill. In reply Bill Tieleman says:
Thanks very much for sending me this - I think I may have an answer.
It appears that this is the CIVIL only courts list. I called the Courts Services Online people today and they guided me to the CRIMINAL courts list.
The main difference I immediately see is that the criminal courtrooms - at least where the Basi,Virk,Basi hearings were held - were in Rooms 67 and 75 - the top floors at the Supreme Court building.
In the PDF Randy just sent all the listings are in Room 31 or 32 and are "Chambers Applications". You will also note that the names are mostly corporations, not individuals, as you would expect in almost all criminal prosecutions. And the start times are almost all 9:45 a.m.
Next, go to this URL:
Click on it and you get to this URL
[Which is headed:
Vancouver Law Courts
Public Access Supreme Court Criminal List]
Which you will see has much different info than on your PDF, including charges, count numbers, case numbers, and courtrooms all in the 50s, 60s and 70s. It also has a variety of different times for the proceedings, either 10 a.m. or 2 p.m. for the most part.
So, it would appear that in large measure because of the complexity of the website and lack of any meaningful differentiation, what you have thought was the daily criminal Supreme Court case list was merely the civil proceedings list - and that the criminal list is in a very different place on the Internet.
Let me know what you think - this seems the most plausible explanation to me so far.
Bill Tieleman West Star Communications
Sincere thanks to Bill (also Randy at House of Infamy http://houseofinfamy.blogspot.com/)
for this information. Bill's clues work. So I'll be watching it on November 24.
What do others think about this on-line service of the A.G. Is it user-friendly?
Bill also sent news of Erik Bornmann, the expected chief prosecution witness in the BVB trial:
Bornman bid for Ontario bar postponed
By BILL TIELEMAN, 24 HOURS
17 Nov 2006
Erik Bornman, the former lobbyist and Paul Martin aide turned key Crown witness in the B.C. Legislature raid case, may not be admitted to the Ontario bar as a lawyer anytime soon.
Bornman, who is scheduled to testify against former government aides David Basi, Bob Virk and Aneal Basi in a breach of trust case starting Dec. 4 in B.C. Supreme Court, articled as a law student in Ontario.
Bornman faces an admissibility hearing by the Law Society of Upper Canada starting next Tuesday in Toronto and is attempting to have the public and media excluded. The hearing follows a complaint to the Law Society about Bornman's "good character" - a requirement for admission.
Bornman is alleged in unproven police documents to have bribed David Basi and Virk to obtain confidential government documents related to the 2003 B.C. Rail privatization.
But late yesterday the Law Society announced on its website that it will request Bornman's hearing be adjourned "until such time as the Student Member testifies at the trial . . . . or the criminal matter is withdrawn or otherwise concludes."
Bornman was an aide when Martin was finance minister. He is a former executive member of the federal Liberal Party in B.C.
Thanks again, Bill.
And the Public Access Court Lists aren't really publicly accessible, either. A later e.mail from Bill Tieleman says he (with a Master's Degree in Political Science) wouldn't have been able to find the Criminal Court lists if he hadn't telephoned the Registry for personal directions.
Randy is getting steamed, too, after going into the URLs recommended by Bill and finding a treasure trove of stuff. Watch what he says on
I'm on edge, waiting for Robin Mathews' next report.
Plus, it's only a week until the next Supreme Court pre-trial Basi Virk Basi hearing on 24 November.
So you remember how you find the Court Room, don't you Steve ... ya just pucker up yer lips and whistle ... apparently.
In other words, is Tieleman right, or, as I suspect, has the background changed since the 30th? And therefore the observations were correct and accurate descriptions of the situation at the time.
In other words, it's a system that nobody can get into easily ... therefore, is not Publicly Accessible (strictly speaking). Sigh.
I should've asked Bill about those Computers which I was told by Victoria Court Registry were right out in the corridor of the Victoria Court House (which I sure as heck never saw, while there last June searching for BVB's hearing) ... in fact, do you remember the run-around I got when telephoning and/or visiting Court Registries in Nanaimo, Parksville (ha), and Victoria?
At the time, I tried to believe that it was a lot to do with overwork and no pressing needs etc. Now I wonder if it suits the A.G. and S.G. to leave the mess the way it is.
I remember filling in an on-line form which asked anyone trying to access something, to let them know if problems arose. I did that. Haven't heard back to this day.
The interests an open and accessible justice system are meant to serve are PUBLIC interests.
Further, only after two weeks of goading does anyone, in this case Bill Tieleman - to which credit is due, in the media give a damn.
That's as big an indictment - probably bigger - as anything one can throw at courts services. Like overcrowded hospital emergency centres - I guess it's not surprising, when much of their work occurs in the hallways.