Saturday, September 25, 2010

 

Hot tip: BC Rail Political Corruption Trial will feature Gary Collins, who was BC Minister of Finance during the transfer of BC Rail from public ownership into private pockets.

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BC Mary comment: Noted in passing and  unconfirmed until the BCSC daily schedule is published, each morning; see "BC Criminal Courts" left margin): there are/were no Friday sittings during September for the BC Rail Political Corruption Trial ... but ... sittings will run 5 days a week, Mondays to Fridays, as of October 1, 2010.

And next week, rumour has it that the Honourable Gary Collins, Minister of Finance during the tainted BC Rail negotiations, will be called to the witness stand in the BC Rail Political Corruption Trial. These sessions are open to the public. 


Meantime, we have a weekend (Sept. 24, 25, 26) to ponder a few things, such as: why do we continue to step cautiously around the plausible notion that it was Gordon Campbell and his government which micro-managed the unpopular sell-off of BC Rail, a vital public asset? Because the process didn't stop on July 14, 2004 when the tainted BCR-CN deal was signed. It has continued in various forms, including the transfer to CN of priceless BCR real estate holdings.

Look back at this report by Keith Fraser:


B.C. Rail execs had no trains but lots of perks

By Keith Fraser
The Province - September 17, 2010

Five years after the sale of B.C. Rail's main freight division, when the company was winding down its operations, they spent $32,000 to fly executives around the world, the Basi-Virk trial heard Thursday.

The details came out during the third day of cross-examination of former B.C. Rail board member Brian Kenning.

In 2008, five years after the Crown corporation had been largely sold off, a number of B.C. Rail executives flew to other key ports, including Hong Kong and Dubai, said Kenning, who sat on the evaluation committee for the sale of B.C. Rail and headed the audit committee.

"So B.C. Rail, in 2008, a company with [few employees], you're saying it's necessary for them to go on airline travel to the Far East, have I got that right?" asked defence lawyer Kevin McCullough.

"No, you haven't got that right," said Kenning. "What I'm saying is that we had a new mandate from the government that required us to carry out our job," said Kenning. "We made the decision that trips to other, key, world-class ports would be helpful to us in carrying out what was a new duty tasked to us by the minister of transportation and the premier's office."

McCullough pressed Kenning on why B.C. Rail, which only had a small rail line at Roberts Bank and no trains by this point, would agree to such an expenditure.

"As a board member, did you not think that was absurd?" he said.

"No, it wasn't absurd," said Kenning. "I think it makes perfect sense, given what the government asked us to do."

Read more HERE:

http://www.theprovince.com/opinion/Rail+execs+trains+lots+perks/3538149/story.html

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And this insight from the astute Salt Spring News:


New World Order corruption in its BC outpost: North American Union related sale of BC Rail trial resumes today [Sept. 13] in Vancouver court

Cartoon courtesy of The Real Story (click HERE to visit the link and see Gordon Campbell trying on his BC RAIL  T-shirt which, in his mirror, is reflected as BC LIAR).

What BC Rail and the HST have in common

Ian Reid
Vancouver Observer - Sept 11, 2010

Around about 1930, Dorothy Parker started answering her telephone with the question, “What fresh hell is this?” Little did she know that she was channeling BC Liberal operatives yelling into their phones 80 years in the future. This week’s fresh hell --- not to be confused with the ongoing hell of the HST --- is the resumption of the BC Rail corruption trial at the Vancouver Courthouse. I know, I know... Not that again. That’s so 2009. But here’s why the BC Rail trial is relevant: it tells us why the BC Liberals thought they could get away with the HST. It lays out, like a late night episode of Law and Order, their way of doing business. The BC Rail trial is the BC Liberal M.O. on full display – with cross-examination.

For example, next week Alan Wallace of CIBC World Markets takes the stand. Wallace was the hired gun responsible for implementing the BC Rail sell-off, a process riddled with leaks and charges of unfairness and favoritism. Those charges came to a head in the fall of 2003 as the BC Liberals prepared to pick the winning proponent. Two of the three firms in play got wind of secret information supplied to the government’s favourite CN and complained to Wallace and the government. Here’s what Burlington Northern’s president had to say just before they pulled out of the process: “Lack of fairness”, “favoritism”, “serious breach of the process.” Canadian Pacific said much the same in a separate series of letters to the government, except they leaked their complaint to the media.

What did the BC Liberals do? They leaked back, releasing an unfinished draft report from Charles Rivers Associates – the so-called fairness report – that purported to show the whole mess was on the up and up, totally fair and completely unbiased. This is the report the forgetful Martyn Brown remembered rapturously on the stand last July. He told the jury the Charles Rivers report gave the sale process the stamp of legitimacy. Except internal government documents on the BC NDP Caucus website show that the report was anything but legitimate. It turns out the report was preliminary, didn’t include any interviews with the three proponents and was edited by the government. You can bet Wallace will be answering questions about these charges of abuse of process and favoritism if and when he takes the stand Monday. ...

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and from Pastor Palmer:
 
No grounds for premier to refuse to testify in BC Rail


by Vaughn Palmer
Vancouver Sun - May 26, 2010

That will depend on whether he is called.

Campbell was not on the list of 40 witnesses presented by the prosecution during the jury-selection process.

But the defence could seek to call him, providing the judge agreed that his test[i]mony could be relevant to the proceedings.

Or the crown could add him to the list to rebut testimony from defence witnesses.

In that event, some commentary on the trial has suggested that Campbell could/would refuse to appear by invoking his privilege as a member of the legislature.

But no  privilege exists that would allow an elected member to refuse to testify  a criminal proceeding.

If called, he would have the same obligation to appear as any other citizen.
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Comments:
"You can bet Wallace will be answering questions about these charges of abuse of process and favoritism if and when he takes the stand Monday. ...

Will he really be answering questions, or will it be another case of "I don't recall?"

I'm really tiring of the blatant display of injustice, EVERYWHERE.

ie - Jean Charest denies everything his former cabinet minister swears to under oath - ONE OF THEM IS LYING. Martyn Brown and Brian Kenning both remember NOTHING - they are both LYING. Mike Harris under oath contradicts his minister under oath - ONE OF THEM IS LYING!

But nobody is charged with perjury, or in the case of J-Mac and the amnesiacs, no one is ordered to be responsive to questions. Meanwhile if you are brown in colour, you are convicted of perjury or if you are an 82 year old grandmother trying to protect OUR LEGACY, you are compared to child molesters and threatened with life in prison.

When will British Columbians and Canadians wake up and start responding to the crime wave being perpetrated on them by their "betters" like the French, Greeks and other people who apparently value their rights more than we do.

It seems that politicians only respond to the peoples will when the threat of actual revolution is in the air - as was the case during the dirty thirties - which spurred the patrician, born to the elite, FDR to usher in the New Deal.

Today people just roll over, wind up living on the street, in tents if they are lucky, being pushed around by the man in the employ of the greed bags.

General Electric has NO DIVINE right to our rivers, that railroad company from Texas, CN, has NO DIVINE RIGHT TO OUR RAILROAD and the corporate elite don't have the right to make the poor and middle class assume their share of taxes!
 
This trial is not about the government or governors of BC Rail, its about three individuals who have had criminal charges laid against them by the Crown.

The Defense lawyers job is to convince the jury that the defendants are not guilty as charged.

McCullough has done that on the case of the leaks because Bobby Virk was suspended from his job, Dave Basi was fired from his job, on December 28th, 2003, and yet the Board of Directors for BC Rail still saw the leaking of information happening.

We may never know who was leaking information. As far as the defendants are concerned, it wasn't them, and Kenning has admitted to that on the stand, that the leak continued after December 28, 2003. The jury is not dumb, deaf and blind.

There are still 38 Witnesses to testify, and if readers of blogs and newspapers haven't noticed, the Special Prosecutor has been on the defense since Day 1 of this trial that he initiated. There's a long way to go, more mud to turn over.
 
Anonymous 9:21,

You are incorrect. This trial is entirely about "the government" despite the incongruous fact that three of their personally-selected employees are the only ones so far "who have had criminal charges laid against them."

Your air of superiority is a bit thick, when at this late date you advise us that the Defence lawyers' job is to convince the jury that the defendants are not guilty as charged.

You might have guessed that, after 4 years of waiting for some judicial movement forward, we'd have recognized that fact.

You advise us that "[t]he jury is not dumb, deaf, and blind". Did someone suggest that they are?

What's your point? You seem to be trying to tell us something ... but what?
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PABlum Brigade visitor from Victoria (fancy that) at 9:21 ( do they (or we) pay you overtime to work on Saturday morning?

I hate to interrupt your free legal seminar with a fact or two but:

It is a common defence tactic to point out who the actual criminal is if it is someone other than the accused. I.E. If I was charged with one of the murders now attributed to Willy Pickton my lawyers and I would try to bring into the proceedings evidence that indicated he had done the deeds of which I was accused. If this happened to lead to the discovery that low and behold he had murdered even more victims, then justice will have actually been done.

I'm not so sure that Basi or Virk didn't leak any information, but I also think IF THEY DID, it was done under the orders of their superiors who just happen to be the criminals posing as the Government of BC.

Your foolish attempt to hi-jack the conversation is like a cop issuing a parking ticket to a car in which a violent sexual assault is taking place and ignoring the ongoing felony to issue the parking ticket.

Also Mr. 9:21 since you are so knowledgeable maybe you could explain to me why Dave Basi and Bobby Virk were treated so differently in the immediate aftermath of the Ledge Raids - since nobody in the premier's office or cabinet had ANY idea what they were up to! This question has puzzled me since the first week of 2003.
 
Yeah, Koot. What you said. Many of us think about that issue too, and

since the trial evidence actually started coming into the public domain,

it seems clear that quiet Bobby Virk held a much more sensitive strategic position in the BC Rail negotiations ...

but also,

although it was only a rumour, I understand, (Anonymous 9:21 please note)

Bobby Virk was allegedly kept on the BC government payroll and received a phone call every month allegedly from the premier suggesting to Bobby that if he (Bobby) kept his mouth shut, he (Bobby) "would be taken care of".

In fact, that rumour came up in evidence at trial.
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Another thing, Koot.

Do you think that Gary Collins is still a Member in Good Standing with the Campbell Gang? Like he was when we heard his chummy recorded phone call with Dave Basi who was preparing to "rip a new one" in the person of a mayor who wasn't keen on Gordo's plan to give BC Rail away?

Is Collins likely to rat out his old pals when he gets questioned on the Basi Virk witness stand?

I think "No" to the first question,

but am not sure about the 2nd question, with so many quid pro quo options around.

What do you think?
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Talking about evidence.... McCullough was able to extract the reason why Kenning and his fellow BC Rail Board members went flying via Cathay Pacific for $32,000. It was to see what Port of Vancouver competitors were doing in Hong Kong and Dubai.

I've always known our container Port terminal as Centenial Terminal aka Centerm... but it turns out I've been calling it by the wrong name.

I would have been closer to being correct if I had said:

The operator of Centerm is Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company (P&O), but only if I was looking through rose coloured glasses in 2008, because two years before that, it was sold to..... ......DP World.


"News and Press Releases

Port’s newest Super Post-Panamax crane to pass under Lions Gate on July 4

6/26/2008 12:00:00 AM

DP World, the terminal operator for Centerm container terminal on the south shore of Burrard Inlet, will take delivery of the crane from supplier Zhenhua Port Machinery Co. Ltd. (ZPMC) of Shanghai."




When it comes to containers, its all about Location, Location, Location of DP World operations:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dubai_Ports_World#Locations_of_DP_World.27s_operations

DP World has operations in Vancouver, Hong Kong and ......Dubai.... and if you go to the above link you'll find out where the other 46 operations are as well.

Why the Board would have to go to Dubai, only the BC Liberals would know the answer to that one.

History note from Wikipedia:

"DP World was created in 2005 by a merger between the Dubai Ports Authority (DPA) and an Dubai Ports International (DPI) which had been founded in 1999."
 
Mary, your speculation about Gary Collins' possible actions on the stand remind me of how valuable just one person with a shred of ethical fibre in their body could upset the whole Gordo corrupt apple cart. Isn't there anyone who feels any guilt for their part in the ongoing crime spree that has been sprung on the people of this province?

One person with a memory could blow a hole in all this amnesiacs down the road and make some of them wish they hadn't lied on the stand quite so much. Do they think that the defense lawyers are just throwing stuff against the wall to see if it sticks. Perhaps some of these stuffed lying shirts should give some consideration to the fact that the defense team are pretty sharp cookies and they have been talking to Basi, Basi and Virk for a number of years now and I'm pretty sure that the BBV boys between them know where a lot of bodies are buried.

I'm perfectly fine with giving a free ride to the first one or few to come clean, but the rest of the conspirators can stick with their "I don't recall" or outright lies all the way through lengthy prison terms.

I still think ala Skookum that things could take a real turn for the worse if some US companies who were also losers in the rigged game decide to get involved or the SEC or other regulators who would be screaming if this was going on in some other country and US companies were getting played for chumps through influence peddling decide to cast a glance in the direction of this banana republic known as BC.
 
Nice work, N.V.G.
 
Dear Diary:

"Minister Kevin Falcon's Asia Tour 2008

Transportation Minister Kevin Falcon led a delegation of private and public sector partners on a two-week mission to promote trade through Canada’s Pacific Gateway transportation network.

During the June 13-27 trip to Beijing, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Singapore and Dubai, the Minister and partners promoted B.C. as the preferred gateway for two-way trade between Asia and North America."

SNIP

"Events included a meeting with Cathay Pacific, a meeting and tour of multi-level logistics facility ATL Logistics run by DP World, and on June 19 we hosted a roundtable meeting with business and industry leaders in Hong Kong."

SNIP

"On Wednesday we met with Dubai Ports Worldwide (DP World) and toured Jebel Ali Port and Free Zone. The port is growing rapidly and uses cranes that can handle four 20-foot containers at a time. DP World runs the Centerm Terminal in Vancouver."

SNIP

"During the two-week trip, we told our Pacific Gateway story, highlighted British Columbian technology and expertise, listened to our current and future customers and formed potential new business relationships. It was a productive and insightful journey."

http://www.th.gov.bc.ca/pacificgateway/asia_trip_2008.htm
 
MLA Kevin Falcon has no control over when companies make donations to the BC Liberal Party, but the optics on this trip of his, which included a new Mandate that the BC Rail Board of Directors should accompany him, appear badly timed.

Spending taxpayers dollars to free wheel around the world did result in one political donation for the BC Liberal PARTY during the days of their visit.

DP WORLD (CANADA) INC. 2008/06/25
$10,000.00
BC LIBERAL PARTY

Total Contribution For This Search: $41,990.00


"Minister Kevin Falcon's Asia Tour 2008

Transportation Minister Kevin Falcon led a delegation of private and public sector partners on a two-week mission to promote trade through Canada’s Pacific Gateway transportation network.

During the June 13-27 trip to Beijing, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Singapore and Dubai, the Minister and partners promoted B.C. as the preferred gateway for two-way trade between Asia and North America."

http://contributions.electionsbc.gov.bc.ca/pcs/SA1SearchResults.aspx?FilerSK=%28ALL%29&EDSK=0&FilerTypeSK=0&Contributor=dp%20world&PartySK=0&ED=%28ALL%29&FilerType=%28ALL%29&Filer=%28ALL%29&Party=%28ALL%29&DateTo=&DateFrom=&DFYear=&DFMonth=&DFDay=&DTYear=&DTMonth=&DTDay=
 
Gary Collins is no longer an "honorable" politician. American legislators keep their elected titles after they retire (or are run out of town).

I've noticed this trend (retaining elected titles)in many places in Canada; we're not Americans; drop the honorariums!

Can we refer to him as the ex-cabinet minister?
 
Anon 9:27,

Are you sure about this? I've seen "the Honourable X, Y, and Zed" many times, esp. on official pronouncements ...

besides (lean closer as I whisper) ...

I used it, in the Collins case, only for comic effect.

Don't tell me you missed the comic effect?

Come onn ...

But it leads me back, to a previous era when a learned friend took issue with me using the term "Gordo". Here's why I did that ...

I had read that during Gordo's tenure as Leader of the Official Opposition, he and his team would never ... as in NEVER ... address the Barrett government formally.

So the duly elected and honourable Premier David Barrett was always addressed by the Campbell Gang in Opposition as "Dave", etc., to flaunt their disrespect; and when Joy MacPhail became Leader of the Official Opposition, she was similarly addressed in the Legislature as "Joy".

It was a bit of mean-spirited nastiness (after all, they had a 77 to 2 advantage) ... repeat, nastiness which slipped past most of us, myself included, until much later when Campbell Dirty Tricks became more apparent.

So, believe me, I wouldn't be annointing any of that team with the term "Honourable" unless I was rolling on the floor, laughing, as I did so.

But thanks for caring. These symbollic things are important.
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No trial today, Dave Basi is sick...Do you see a pattern happening here...Amazing, I don`t recall Willy Picton getting sick once through his entire trial!

cheers
 
Basi/Virk/Basi trial canceled as of 10:20 due to one Defendant being ill. He received a note from his Doctor. Aneal and Bobby showed up.

Trial resumes Tuesday, 10:00am
 
When I become King, the word honourable will not be allowed to be used to refer to politicians without the use of a preceding (dis). Likewise the the word justice in reference to the BC Justice System will be dis-allowed without the use of (in)

Repeat after me class -
(dis)honourable
(in)justice

Thank you..........class is now cancelled for the rest of the day as one of my classmates isn't feeling well - my school is like the trial - what are the odds that we can go an entire week without illness preventing a juror, defendent or court official from attending and the only principle whose presence seems to be unecessary is the Seldom Scene Wild Bill Berardino -improperly appointed OH SO Special Prosecutor for the BC liaRs.
 
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