Thursday, March 29, 2007
Bill Tieleman with a new bombshell ...
LAWYERS FOR FORMER GOVERNMENT AIDES SAY CROWN IS WITHHOLDING POLICE NOTES AND WIRETAP LOGS
By Neal Hall
March 29, 2007
Defence lawyers filed thousands of pages of material Wednesday to support a previous disclosure application related to two former provincial government aides facing trial on charges of fraud, breach of trust and accepting a benefit.
The police investigation, which began with a drug trafficking probe in 2002, led the RCMP to a raid on the legislature in December 2003, when search warrants were executed on the offices of Udhe Singh (Dave) Basi and Bobby Singh Virk.
Basi's cousin, Aneal Basi, a former Liberal communications officer, also is accused of two counts of money-laundering. The offences are related to the $1-billion sale of BC Rail to Canadian National Railway.
Vancouver lawyer Michael Bolton, representing Dave Basi, said Wednesday that about 2,000 pages of defence material were filed in support of its disclosure application. The material includes police notes and information from wiretap logs, he said.
Bolton said the material likely won't be publicly released until it is examined by the trial judge, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Elizabeth Bennett.
The disclosure application is scheduled to be heard starting April 2 and is expected to take a few days. The defence claims hundreds of documents still haven't been disclosed by police and special prosecutor Bill Berardino.
Beginning April 16, the defence will launch into two voir dires: The first will involve a legal challenge of the wiretap authorization -- a judge authorized police to secretly record phone conversations -- and the second will be a challenge of the search warrants. At the time of the raid, Dave Basi was a ministerial assistant to Gary Collins, then finance minister. Virk was a ministerial assistant to then transportation minister Judith Reid. The Crown alleges the ministerial assistants put the bidding process for BC Rail at risk by leaking documents in hopes of securing federal government positions or other benefits.
[The headline contradicts Paragraph #4, doesn't it? - BC Mary.]
Bill - Number One guy on the B.C. Rail Case - thank you!
2000 supporting pages of documents sounds like the defence are putting their facts where their mouth is.