Saturday, June 21, 2008


Defence ... allegations against prosecutor


The Globe and Mail - June 21, 2008

VANCOUVER -- A defence application in a political corruption trial has been broadened to include allegations against the special prosecutor.

Michael Bolton, one of the lawyers representing three former government employees facing multiple charges, said yesterday that an application alleging political interference in the case by government officials now also names William Berardino.

{Snip} ...

The defence application alleges that the rights of the accused were violated when a senior adviser to Premier Gordon Campbell was allowed to see confidential documents that police seized in a Dec. 28, 2003, raid on the provincial legislature.

{Snip} ...

He said the defence at this point is not seeking to call Mr. Berardino as a witness, but will attempt to call Mr. Campbell, Mr. Dobell and several other government officials as witnesses.

The court will hear the application July 14.

Mr. Berardino declined to comment on the allegation because the matter is before the court.

The application alleges that the Charter of Rights and Freedoms was violated "by virtue of political interference by the provincial government and more particularly the Premier, the Premier's office, agents and staff, and the Cabinet and its agents and staff, with the disclosure of documents critical to the accused persons' right and ability to make full answer and defence."

{Snip} ...


If theapplication is successful, does that mean there will be a mistrial?
will teflon Gordo slip outta this one to???
Very good question, 8:50. Then we'd start all over again with a new trial? Might not be such a bad idea.

So 9:35, how teflon is teflon? Well, teflon does wear thin, doesn't it. Here's something from Times Colonist this morning (June 21):


Jack Knox
Times Colonist - Sat., June 21, 2008

The 100-car Skeena Queen takes 35 minutes to travel from Swartz Bay to Saltspring Island. The round-trip fare for mom, dad and two teens in the family car this summer: $64.70.

The 80-car ferry Osprey 2000 takes 35 minutes to cross Kootenay Lake. The fare for mom, dad and two teens in the family car: Zero.

Not a penny.

In fact, all 14 of B.C.'s inland ferries are free. Some, like the McLure ferry north of Kamloops, are just a two-car platform scootching across the river in five minutes or so. But then there are the bigger boats like those on the Kootenay Lake crossing, billed as the longest free ferry ride in the world.

There's a simple explanation for this apparent inequity: Saltspring Islanders are getting screwed.

But wait! Look at the B.C. Ferries fare if that same family of four tries to go to Hornby Island. Two 10-minute puddle-jumps from Vancouver Island and Denman Island cost $97.00. Compared to Saltspring Island, people on Hornby are getting screwed.

Hold on! Gulf Islands ferries are still subsidized by government. The province pays roughly half of the operating costs, unlike the main Vancouver Island-mainland routes, which are self-supporting. Compared to Hornby Islanders, Victorians are getting screwed.

Not so fast! That ever-shrinking ferry subsidy is all we get for our taxes, says Hornby. Not like the capital region where the province is throwing in $400 million for sewage treatment. Hell, the rising ferry fares added $1,000 to a homeowner's cost of installing a septic field on Hornby. Compared to Victoria, Hornby Islanders are getting screwed.

And jeez, everybody is getting the shaft compared to Vancouver. The province is giving The Big Smoke $50 million for an art gallery, $541 million (and counting) for their runaway train of a convention centre and who knows how much -- $200 million? -- for a new roof for B.C. Place. Victoria couldn't squeeze a nickel out of the Liberals when building Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre, yet they come up with nine figures for a B.C. Place roof. (Not to mention $15 million from the Forests Ministry for a hockey rink in Rich Coleman's Fraser Valley riding, the forests minister arguing, with a straight face, that the project would be a global showcase for wood construction.)

Somehow, the same government that decided B.C. Ferries should just pull up its socks and build its own ferries without a dime of taxpayers' money figured it would be OK to shovel $10.3 billion at four new Lower Mainland transit lines and $3 billion at the Gateway transportation project. Live Free Or Die Republicans when it comes to transportation spending on Vancouver Island, the Liberals suddenly turn into Franklin Roosevelt Nanny State Democrats when it comes to chucking tax dollars around anything within sniffing distance of English Bay.

This is what ticks us off: The inequality. Government can choose whatever philosophy it likes; people just want it to be applied fairly.

Good luck. Waiting for fairness from government is like waiting for a rational explanation of the floating feet.

Take those inland ferries, run by private outfits on behalf of the Highways Ministry. Why is it that they remain free, while B.C. Ferries travellers not only pay, but face fuel surcharges of up to 20 per cent this summer? Perhaps it's because B.C. Ferries vessels burn diesel, while the inland boats run on fairy dust. Or maybe it's because people in the Interior own guns, whilst those on the Gulf Islands are armed with nothing but roach clips and dulcimers. A Liberal plan to introduce inland tolls was shelved in 2002, the year before they began pushing B.C. Ferries fares into cruise-ship territory.

I hesitate to bring this up, because you know that if the government ever does move to address this inequity, it won't do so by making our ferries cheaper. No, it will begin charging for the inland ferries, I'll get the blame ... {Snip, snip, snippety-doo-dah} ...

Jack Knox is a genius in my view, coming up with truth mixed with humor on a daily basis. I just read that column to my husband about 15 minutes ago, commenting on what a great job Jack does and how rare such a talent is. I love the roach clips and dulcimers line. Long may he write for us. Jack Knox's integrity shines through his writing. I hope some young journalists are paying attention and learning from his example.
So why is it that Neil has stopped covering the trial? Could it be because senior editors at the Sun spiked his story on the Dobell angle? I hear he had it first.
Interesting question Anon-Above at 12:20pm.

Would be very interesting to know if Mr. Hall was even present yesterday.....

Hall wasn't present for Friday's court date. There were about 10 people in the audience.
Thanks, Anonymous 9:00,

I was told by Bill Tieleman that only he (Bill) and Mark Hume were there, representing the press.

It's impressive that 10 clever people did manage to get there, despite the lack of advance notice which is normally provided in the Court listings.

Thanks Anon at nine

And of those 10, how many, pray tell, were from the O.I.C. (anti)Media Network?

Hi Mary

I posted a comment below on the screwups with the court dockets.(they not being listed in the regular docket but are listed in the "completed" file. After posting that I went back to the "Completed" file and lo an behold another screw up.

You had a commentor here comment that the next date was July 15th. And Bill T advised that it was July 14th. The way things are going here these both could be true because as I check this morning there is a PTC (pretrial conference scheduled for 10:00 AM Thursday JULY 3RD.
Do you think it might be that we are following this trial so close that this could be the reason that these errors are caught? If this is happening in other trials there could be dire consequences for defendants relying on this info when they don't show up.
Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!
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