Sunday, June 03, 2007

 

Monday June 4, 2007, BC Supreme Court resumes with Madam Justice Elizabeth Bennett's rulings expected on Basi, Virk, Basi applications for disclosure

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Monday morning, 4 June 2007, 10:00 AM, Session confirmed.


Almost 8 pages detailing the charges on Vancouver Supreme Court Listing (click on link at left, to see the list). It will be important to know if Special Prosecutor Bill Berardino returns to the courtroom today for Judge Bennett's dramatic rulings in the approach to the trial of Basi, Virk, Basi. - BC Mary.
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Bill Tieleman's column keeps us up to date ... http://billtieleman.blogspot.com/

Basi-Virk defence disclosure application decision is due Monday June 4

BC Supreme Court Justice Elizabeth Bennett to deliver her decision on the defence disclosure application in the Basi-Virk case 10 a.m. - Monday June 4.

The decision is expected to be in writing but whether Justice Bennett will read it in court or simply release it is not clear at this point, nor whether the defence or special prosector will respond.

Justice Bennett may also work out scheduling of the next phase of the case - the defence's Charter of Rights challenge to the whole trial.
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Watch Bill's space for details as soon as they become available and see earlier reports for background.

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Comments:
Seven pages, half of the morning criminal court list. And now we wait with baited breath. Will there be any surprises this morming?
 
BREAKING NEWS BREAKING NEWS

Mary the judge in a scathing judgement ordered berardino and the rcmp to open the files and give them to the accused. She repeatedly criticized the rcmp and the crown for their complete failure to disclose documents in this case. This is the latest from my friend in court, when I hear more I will post another comment. This is a clear win for the citizens of bc and the three accused!
 
Ummm Mary, I think we need to follow up with Mr. Berardino. I have just heard that the Special Prosecutor will be responding to the Judges decision later today.

That response will not be from Bill Berardino as he was not present at court today.

Missing files, documents and now a missing Special Prosecutor.

What's next?
 
Neal Hall just posted this on the Vancouver Sun website.

Judge slams Crown in Basi, Virk trial (12:33 pm)
Neal Hall, Vancouver Sun
Published: Monday, June 04, 2007
A judge had some scathing comments today about the insufficient Crown disclosure of documents in the case of two B.C. government ministerial aides accused of corruption.

"Disclosure is a constitutional right," B.C. Supreme Court Justice Elizabeth Bennett said in an oral ruling. "This right has not been sufficiently respected so far in this process."

The judge noted that the defence is entitled to disclosure in a timely fashion, but added: "The review of the many problems with this case demonstrates that disclosure has not been sufficiently made in a timely way."


One of the problems has been the additional police notes keep getting found and disclosed to defence, including some since the pre-trial application began.

The judge made a sweeping order for every police officer involved in the case to "review every piece of paper he or she has and ensure that it is submitted to the Crown forthwith."

She added she regretted having to make the order so broad, but added there had been a "substantial failure to respect the disclosure rights of the accused" and she wanted to avoid a miscarriage of justice.

The case involved a police raid in December 2003 of the legislative offices of the accused, Dave Basi and Bobby Virk.
At the time, Basi was the ministerial assistant to then finance minister Gary Collins and Virk was ministerial assistant to transportation minister Judith Reid.

Basi and Virk are facing trial on charges of accepting bribes, fraud and breach of trust.
Basi's cousin, Aneal Basi, is accused of money laundering.
At the heart of the case is the government's privatization sale of BC Rail.
The Crown alleges Basi and Virk accepted bribes from a lobbyist representing one of the bidders for the railway. Basi and Virk allegedly leaked confidential government infortmation about the bidding process.

nhall@png.canwest.com
 
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