Wednesday, May 16, 2007

BC Liberal Party asked RCMP not to lay charges in Basi-Virk dirty tricks, defence alleges

Defence alleges political interference

Basi-Virk

By BILL TIELEMAN, 24 HOURS

The defence in the B.C. Legislature raid case alleged yesterday that the B.C. Liberal Party asked the RCMP not to charge former provincial government aide David Basi over dirty tricks conducted while under contract to the party.

Lawyers for Basi and Bob Virk, two ministerial aides charged with breach of trust and fraud, alleged tricks included a plan to dump manure at the home of B.C. Federation of Labour President Jim Sinclair and a Liberal-organized protest at the Federation's 2003 convention.

The Federation strongly opposed the Liberal privatization of B.C. Rail in 2003.

Virk's defence lawyer Kevin McCullough alleged that the RCMP consulted B.C. Liberal Party Executive Director Kelly Reichert, who told Premier Gordon Campbell that criminal charges were recommended against Basi.

McCullough alleged an "effort by Reichert to not have the charges approved. That reeks of political interference."

The allegations come from a June 24, 2005 RCMP report titled: "Kelly Reichert - Do Not Disclose."

McCullough said a recorded RCMP interview with Reichert was stopped but a conversation continued.

"After the tape was turned off Mr. Reichert was asked if the Liberal Party was comfortable being the victim in three payments to Basi. Reichert said frankly any good to the party by prosecutions would be outweighed by the embarrassment to the party, with the issue of the load of manure dumped on Jim Sinclair's lawn and sending people to the B.C. Federation of Labour convention," McCullough alleged.

Sinclair told 24 hours there were protesters at the Federation convention but that his home was never attacked. Sinclair asked why the RCMP would allegedly consult the Liberal Party but not the Federation.

At B.C. Supreme Court, NDP MLA Leonard Krog called for an investigation into B.C. Rail and government and Liberal Party conduct.

But Attorney-General Wally Oppal rejected any inquiry call. "Because some allegations are made, do we start holding inquiries? Maybe it's accurate. Maybe it's not. Let's wait to see what the judge finds."

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Still can't quite understand the concept of the BCLiberal Party as 'victims'.

These were their OIC appointees, doing their bidding in ways they tacitly (and more than tacitly) approved.

The victim here is responsible ethical politics and the real victims are the citizens of this province.

What is the scuttlebutt in the Liberal Party Bill?

Someone MUST be talking.

JD said...

Bill,

Is there any way that the media along with other members of the public can ask or apply to the court for Justice Bennett to amend her order and allow for the release of these RCMP documents?

I just think that the public deserves to see for themselves what is going on in this case.

JD

BC Mary said...

.

Oh. Now I sorta get it. Sorta.

So the B.C. Government of the time didn't just hate Jim Sinclair because he headed up a Union (unions bad, unions ba-a-ad) or because he might possibly have been a New Democrat (NDP bad, NDP very very bad) ...

They hated being opposed in their determination to sell stuff.

Oh, now I get it. I think.

What I don't get at all, though, is how Jim Sinclair didn't notice that load of manure dumped unceremoniously on his front lawn.

Is B.C. politics so rotten that a citizen would no longer notice that smell ... ?

.

T. LLB said...

Bill,

Are you able to ask a question to the Special Prosecutor?

I have been following the Conrad Black trial and it was revealed this week that David Radler, the star witness, confirmed that he committed perjury in a BC trial regarding Horizon papers. Mr. Radler testified that he was given legal advice regarding his testimony.

My question for you to ask is, was Bill Berardino or David Harris providing legal advice to David Radler in the Horizon case?

I have heard through a lawyer friend that Bill Berardino has connections to Hollinger Corp.

Anonymous said...

Question Period is getting more like a soap opera as the Premier got through his 30 minutes today( Wed.) The best line was not interfering with the judical system. We can only assume the head Liberal was in Gordos office for a chat about the weather. One hopes the dirty trick issues end up with some charges but don't count on it. They should start charging admission to QP as recently it's been quite a story. Gordon hopes the discussions will now turn to the huge pay raise. For some reason they all started out quite jovial. Maybe free booze at the dining room or somehting. It went downhill pretty quick. Next best line was. Since the AG went outside the chamber yesterday and said he was against dirty tricks, so why don't you do the same premier? We heard again how the economy is in great shape and his governemnt will be judged next election. dl

Bill Tieleman said...

In answer to a question from T LLB I can't ask Mr. Berardino a question because he has not attended the hearing for a single moment!

I will try to find an answer for you though.

The hearing is now adjourned until the next phase - the defence Charter Challenge to the whole trial. No definite date on that yet but sometime in June.

Anonymous said...

Bill I would hope you call Berardino's office and ask him. If he isn't there you can ask his partner. If they refuse to comment you will have your answer! If its true, this is going to raise more questions about a lot of things.

T said...

Thanks Bill. I reiterate that this information regarding Berardino came from a person who believes that it is true.

T. LLB

Micheal Thompson said...

Vancouver lawyers are a close bunch and it always seems that you hear the same names popping up in high profile cases.

I would not be surprised that the blog comments turn into another spin off story. I hope that you will follow up and keep following up until you find an answer.

This whole case has more legs than a centipede.