Thursday, July 03, 2008

 

Wakey, wakey CanWest ... Coffee's on!

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Richard Watts wrote one report which appears today (under various headlines) in each of B.C.'s CanWest daily newspapers. This is the first published CanWest mention of the A.L.R. trial. Although Times Colonist gives a front-page position to this important aspect of the Basi affair, why did all CanWest newzpapers fail to inform the public that preliminary hearings during May and June -- under a publication ban -- were under way? - BC Mary. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

DEVELOPERS TO STAND TRIAL FOR BRIBERY

Case involves Sunriver Estates; former aide to finance minister also charged


Richard Watts
Times Colonist -- Published: Thursday, July 03, 2008

Two Vancouver Island developers have been ordered to stand trial in B.C. Supreme Court for breach of trust and bribery of a B.C. government official.


Provincial court Judge Ernie Quantz ordered yesterday the trials of Anthony Ralph Young and James Seymour Duncan, builders of Sunriver Estates in Sooke, on charges of making an illegal payment to a government official and breach of trust.


David Basi
, once the ministerial assistant to former finance minister Gary Collins, also stands charged with defrauding the government and breach of trust in connection with the Sunriver Estates case.

{Snip} ...

Quantz's decision was reached after a preliminary inquiry. Information from the inquiry cannot be disclosed because of a ban on publication.

The case will likely go to B.C. Supreme Court next week to set a date for trial.


Basi's name first entered news reports in connection with the Dec. 28, 2003, police raid on the legislature.
When the Sunriver charges were first laid, RCMP said they arose after the raid on the legislature.

Court documents dealing with the charges indicate the Crown is alleging Young and Duncan paid $50,000 to Basi between Jan. 1, 2002, and Sept. 1, 2003, in connection with an application to take property out of the Agricultural Land Reserve.

The property was owned by Shambrook Hills Development Corp., also known as Sunriver Estates.
Sunriver Estates is a 700-home development built on 155 hectares along the Sooke River with parkland, trails and a school. The land was originally purchased from forest company Timberwest. Past news reports indicate three attempts were required to get the Agricultural Land Commission to agree to remove the land from the reserve so it could be rezoned for housing.

Duncan and Young are longtime developers in Victoria. They have been partners in Swiftsure Developments Ltd., whose projects include the Magnolia Hotel in Victoria, the Ocean Park Towers in the Songhees and the Yale House Development near the Oak Bay Municipal Hall.

rwatts@tc.canwest.com
http://www.canada.com/victoriatimescolonist/news/story.html?id=14dad06b-d198-45f6-9cf5-095cec3e37b7 """"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""

BRIBERY TRIAL SET FOR ISLAND DEVELOPERS

Pair charged with making an illegal payment to government official, breach of trust


Richard Watts

Canwest News Service

Published (Vancouver Sun): Thursday, July 03, 2008

Two Vancouver Island developers have been ordered to stand trial in B.C. Supreme Court for breach of trust and bribery of a B.C. government official.

On Wednesday provincial court Judge Ernie Quantz ordered the trials of Anthony Ralph Young and James Seymour Duncan, builders of Sunriver Estates in Sooke, on charges of making an illegal payment to a government official and breach of trust.

David Basi, once the ministerial assistant to former B.C. finance minister Gary Collins, is also charged with defrauding the government and breach of trust in connection with the Sunriver Estates case.

Quantz's reached his decision after a preliminary inquiry. Information from the inquiry cannot be disclosed because of a publication ban.

The case will likely go to B.C. Supreme Court next week to set a date for trial.


{Snip} ...

The land was originally purchased from forest company Timberwest. Past news reports indicate three attempts were required to get the Agricultural Land Commission to agree to remove the land from the reserve so it could be rezoned for housing. Duncan and Young are longtime developers in Victoria. They have been partners in Swiftsure Developments Ltd., whose projects include the Magnolia Hotel in Victoria, the Ocean Park Towers in the Songhees and the Yale House Development near the Oak Bay Municipal Hall.

http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/news/westcoastnews/story.html?id=eee3894a-6c61-4687-b6d3-d8df29f757ff """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""

NEW CHARGES LAID IN 2003 RAID ON BC LEGISLATURE

Richard Watts
Canwest News Service
Published (The Province): July 02, 2008

VICTORIA - Two Vancouver Island developers have been ordered to stand trial in B.C. Supreme Court for breach of trust and bribery of a B.C. government official.
On Wednesday provincial court Judge Ernie Quantz ordered the trials of Anthony Ralph Young and James Seymour Duncan, builders of Sunriver Estates in Sooke, on charges of making an illegal payment to a government official and breach of trust.

{Snip} ...

http://www.canada.com/theprovince/news/story.html?id=120bed15-4ee2-4335-af51-34281f52bece [This URL doesn't work for me. - BC Mary.]

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Comments:
I would love to know how Neal Hall wrote that story a while back if he was not in the court room ? I think Bill Tieleman said he did not see Hall in the court room and he may have talked with L Krog. Hall did that article about the trial possibly starting at the end of the month. I would love to find out if we heard anything further. That article was very different from the other two articles that day. On the same subject, did you ever get any responses back from Keith Baldrey on his information a few months ago that was very sketchy ?

Still bugging me.
 
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Dear Anon 10:39,

Here's my best advice: put your curiosity to work serving to bring you the answers you want ... plus ... serving to remind media that people do care, people need to know, and Big Media isn't getting a free pass.

Keith Baldrey has been generous in his replies but I've been careful not to pile onto him, too. One more reason why it would be great if you spoke to him direct.

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oops. Forgot to add Neal Hall, who has also been courteous and helpful in his replies ... but ... he seems to be away on holiday.

At least, I hope he's on holiday, and planning to return. He's good.

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Mary,

Bill Tieleman gave you a ringing endorsement on CKNW about leading the conspiracy theories about the Leg Raid case.

What do you think about that??
 
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Anonymouse 12:20,

I sincerely hope Bill didn't say "Conspiracy Theories" or think that ... so I'll wait to hear the re-broadcast.

You are kidding, aren't you?

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NO I AM NOT KIDDING. TUNE IN 9:30AM - 10:00 AM ON CKNW.

HE SAID THAT YOUR BLOG WAS INFORMATIVE AS WELL AS THE LEADING SOURCE ON CONSPIRACY THEORIES.

ASK HIM DIRECTLY IF YOU WISH.

I THOUGHT HE WAS A FRIEND...
 
So Mary. I just got back from Kamloops and noticed that there was a court appearance this morning on 23299. Do you know if anyone was able to attend around 10am? I think Bill was on the radio about that time.
 
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What? Wha-a-a-att??? The Basi-Virk Case was back in Supreme Court (Vancouver) today and nobody knew?

Aw Jeez, Gary, do we have to develop eyes in the backs of our heads to keep watching for clues about the people's business?????

Good on YOU for double-checking.

Actually, I did check the Supreme Court List yesterday, just to be sure, and then scolded self for being so watchful and uneasy. After all, I said (to self), nobody had said anything about a pre-trial hearing on Thursday July 3 ... did they??

Dammit anyway.

Why don't you ask Bill T. (not Bill G.) if he knows what it was about??

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Anonymous said...

"Mary I thought you might find this interesting the next time you try to tell us how great the police force is and how we should trust them blindly ..."


and the rest of your comment is snipped.

I will NOT allow the targeting of any person or any group. My regular reader understand that. Nobody has ever tried to suggest that I'm fabricating facts or manipulating minds. I find the comments offensive.

You then lead into a story which we'll all see in tomorrow's newspapers and will feel decidedly sorry about. I think someone should tell you that it's no cause for rejoicing, or scoring points.

I'd expect some rudeness if I were the one who selected two (that's your sample) TWO persons from a group of THOUSANDS and said (if those two had done something wrong) that it means that all of the others (THOUSANDS) are just like that, too.

If I sound angry, it's because I am angry. What you say is so opposite to what I do on this blog.

"The next time you try to tell us ..." you say. You virtually accuse me of lying. What's with you?

Didn't you read anything at all on this web-site about the unfortunate incident of Victoria Police Constable Ravinder Dosanjh?

If you can show me where BC Mary has ever tried to tell you "how great the police force is and how we should trust them blindly" I might give some thought to digging your comment out of the garbage.

Meantime ... excuse me for saying THIS, but I think it might've occurred to you to show some appreciation for a web-site where everybody can sit down together and read up on an important topic WITHOUT such ugly inferences.



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July 3 was supposed to be the date for the update on whether the crown had their material ready for July 14th, just like June 20th was supposed to be the update for whether the material was ready for June30th. It wasn't, so the June 30th date was pushed back to July 14th.
 
I don't agree with the Anonymous poster about the CKNW show and my comments - which I stand behind completely and without apology.

Mary, your readers can judge for themselves - here's a transcript of the segment regarding your esteemed blog, which I was pleased to promote:

Thursday July 3, 2008

9:43 a.m.

Bill Good: I talked briefly before the break that there are allegations of conspiracies. You told me there was actually a blog that suggested you two were kept off the air yesterday in some kind of nefarious fashion.

Bill Tieleman: Yeah. There’s a great blog - the person we don’t really know – BC Mary - runs this thing called the BC Legislature Raids and it’s a great blog and it’s the source of all sorts of information – both very factual stuff and sometimes conspiracy theories as well.

But one of her posters – one of the anonymous posters – said “There’s no way you guys were knocked off for ‘breaking news’ yesterday because you were talking about the closure of the bridge because of a suicidal woman and they just figured that was a conspiracy to not allow the media to talk about Basi-Virk - even though I’d said, I’d posted on there that we were going to be on the next day. Some people are very paranoid.

Bill Good: This is very complicated – Carly and I when I come in in the morning take a look at what we’ve planned and what’s happened overnight and decide whether or not what we’ve planned is timely or if something has happened overnight that should change the agenda that day and we decided, well, a lot of people had been inconvenienced by the bridge closure and that a lot of people would want to talk about it, plus there was this minor matter of Mats Sundin, and so we thought that those two things would be on people’s minds more than Basi-Virk, but that you two would be available today to talk about.

So, so much for conspiracy theories or wanting in some way to censure the story.
 
Yep! No conspiracy there - just another example of pandering to the lowest common denominator.

What a shock.

The biggest political scandal in this province in a century and, in the judgment of Bill Good, people would rather talk about a traffic jam on the 2nd Narrows or a 38 year old Swedish athlete being offered 20 million bucks to defect to the west coast.

How much soap does CKNW sell these days?

We know it's all 'soft' soap - that's for sure.

Now, let me think, how big did the premier say the BC Rail deal was?

Although Campbell said it was a billion dollar gain for the province, he's never adequately explained why the provincial books show it as a net gain of 199 million.

I won't bother to post the link - anyone who wants to can find the information right here - On MARY'S BLOG....


Judge for yourselves where the media have their heads.
 
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Many thanks, Bill. No worries.

It's difficult to avoid feeling deliberately left out of things, I guess, when the public has had to wait so long and dig so hard for the barest reassurance about what's going on in government.

That's why some of us would like to see TV cameras activated in the courtroom for Basi-Virk. Not a commercial TV set-up but a fixed camera as in Parliament, simply watching and transmitting the spoken evidence without comment.

I think a province-wide viewing audience would create a healthy understanding of what's happening in the BCRail Case. People could begin to feel part of the healing process.

For what it's worth, I think those two words -- Conspiracy Theories -- do a lot of harm by putting conscientious people on the defensive for asking questions or offering opinions. The term isn't used as a compliment. And yet, in my view, we're best served by citizens taking an interest, asking questions, and following the development of this very important story.

Thanks again, Bill, for the enormous help you've been to so many of us, in that endeavour.

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If that is all that was said about this blog on the show it is regrettable because I think most people listening and learning about it for the first time from the words above would assume that the blog was somewhat flakey. It seems that Bill began by saying some positive stuff about the blog itself and about Mary but it got buried in the much greater wordage about one commenter's concerns. Unfortunate, even if probably unintentional. Obviously the regular readers of this (AND probably of Bill Tielman's blog) tend to be hypersensitive to the term "conspiracy theorist" because it suggests nuttiness and is very easily and dismissively flung about by smug detractors (negating in the flinger's minds the need to consider and counter people's actually expressed ideas and concerns). I know that I personally have been called a conspiracy theorist in relation to my concerns about the whole Basi/Virk situation, by people who know nothing at all about it, and I find it extremely annoying and insulting. As I said, unfortunate.
 
Can anyone find out on what grounds the first two applications by developers Duncan and Young to have the parcel of forest land released from the Agricultural Land Reserve were denied. If we had this information, we would have a much better idea as to which branches of government were involved.
 
Mary,

I guess I started a firestorm when I mentioned that Billy T had used the "conspiracy theory" language.

Mary, your work on this case exemplifies the importance of citizen journalism and how the blogosphere is becoming the new media source for people who want independent analysis. Your site has been mentioned by the Vancouver Sun, Globe and Mail, CKNW, CBC, NewsLeader papers,etc...

For Bill Tieleman to use the "conspiracy theory" tag, he should understand that it is a pejorative and undermines the work that you and others have done on this site.

As a reader of your blog, I can assure you that the "Conspiracy Theories" do not accurately describe your contributions to the people of BC.

Bill Tieleman went over the top in using the conspiracy tag and over 70,000 readers and posters on this site understand that this is just one avenue for the people of BC to raise their collective voices.

I look forward to reading your site on July 14 when we begin to hear the reasons behind the government's refusal and stonewalling to provide documents that are related to the sale of BC Rail.
 
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Anonymous 10:32,

That's a wonderful statement ... thank you.

What you've said helps to keep me going.

Also I'm immensely proud of the research, opinions, questions and advice which regularly come in.

All of us together, yes, I think we are making a bit of difference ... a very good difference.

Many, many thanks.

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Interesting story in the Sun today about an organized crime officer losing his job over alleged dirty politics between police forces, they mention a provincial government official as a defendant as well.
 
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Anonymous 8:16,

I read that story in Vancouver Sun early this morning, too.

After your comment came in -- with a different take on the information -- I looked the story up again.

It still sounds like work-place politics to me, not so much "dirty tricks". No dirty tricks were named, right?

This particular story is that Allen Dalstrom, a former police officer, is suing for "wrongful dismissal". I interpret that as an allegation of poor judgment and/or bad management at the senior level. We've all been there, seen that, been steamed, quit, right?

The defendants named are:

* Province of British Columbia;
* David Douglas, former Chief Officer of the Organized Crime Agency of B.C., who fired Dalstrom;
* Kevin Begg, head of the provincial government's police services division.


The thing the story reveals which might've irritated the bejapers out of his senior officers, is that Dalstrom talked to Julian Sher, author of "Road to Hell, how the biker gangs are conquering Canada" ... and you can see how this might have made supervisors of those selfsame biker gang investigations feel, at the time, eh?

A Series of Unfortunate Events, rather than outright dirty tricks, is my guess.

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Worth looking into.. Check out the finance statements for Covenant House Vancouver.. and now the government is giving thim a large amount of money.

The amount of money they spend on wages compared to helping out the kids is an issue for me.
 
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