Wednesday, October 24, 2007


It's a developer, stupid! And an "influential developer" at that!


CanWest News Service
Wednesday, October 24, 2007

VICTORIA - A lawyer who filed freedom-of-information requests about suspended police Chief Paul Battershill's expenses said Tuesday he doesn't know why the chief was placed on administrative leave.

The Victoria police board put Battershill on leave Oct. 11, after receiving a leaked copy of an Oct. 9 letter lawyer David Mulroney wrote to Battershill's lawyers.

The letter outlined potential conflicts of interest, and Battershill's lawyers had been trying to block Mulroney's information requests. [Hullo out there: anybody understand this statement? If so, please advise. - BC Mary]

But Mulroney, who said he expects to receive answers to his requests on Friday, fended off questions on Tuesday.

"Whatever information the police board acted upon, is not information I possess," said Mulroney.

"My FOI requests contain no information. I have to assume the administrative leave occurred as a result of the police board speaking to people, although I am not aware of the process they followed or who they spoke to."

Battershill is not allowed to enter the police building, he can't receive e-mails and his BlackBerry has been blocked.

Battershill has said his lawyer has told him not to comment.

Victoria Mayor and police board chairman Alan Lowe called the Oct. 11 emergency meeting after reportedly receiving an information package from the police force.

Police complaint commissioner Dirk Ryneveld said he was still gathering information and will decide in a few days whether there are grounds for an investigation of Battershill.

Mulroney said he filed the FOI requests on behalf of a client who is concerned about the quality of policing in downtown Victoria.

He would not identify the client, who has been reported to be an influential developer.

The requests were for information on salary, benefits and expenses of senior Victoria police personnel and Battershill's expense accounts, including credit cards, dating back to 2004.


I don't know about influential developer but it was reported that it was Gerald Hartwig who made the request.

Gerald was a candidate for Colwood City Council so perhaps the policital angle is right after all.
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