Thursday, June 28, 2007
Ontario Law Society to discuss scheduling of Erik Bornmann's "good character" hearing at meeting Tuesday July 3
The key Crown witness in the breach of trust and fraud trial of former BC Liberal ministerial aides David Basi and Bob Virk - lobbyist Erik Bornmann - continues his efforts to become an Ontario lawyer on Tuesday July 3 in Toronto.
The Law Society of Upper Canada confirmed Thursday that a scheduling meeting will be held Tuesday to discuss when Bornmann's "good character" hearing will take place.
In November 2006 that "good character" hearing was delayed due to the impending trial of Basi and Virk.
As I reported exclusively in 24 hours and this blog, the hearing into Bornmann's "good character" resulted from a complaint to the Law Society. Police have alleged that Basi and Virk were bribed by Bornmann to obtain confidential government documents related to the $1-billion B.C. Rail privatization. Bornmann was a lobbyist for OmniTRAX, one of the bidders.
Law Society Communications Manager Lisa Hall said today that the July 3 meeting of the Hearing Management Tribunal is to deal with scheduling the Bornmann hearing not the "good character" issue itself.
"The merits are not being spoken to," Hall said. She was unable to say if the scheduling meeting was open to the public or the media.
Anyone admitted to the bar must be of "good character" according to Bar Society regulations.
Those regulations read in part:
"Part VI: Good Character Requirement
10. Good Character
(1) In order to be admitted into the Licensing Process, an applicant shall be of good character.
(2) A student shall be of good character.
(3) In order to determine whether the applicant or student is of good character, the Society may require the applicant or student to provide information and/or supporting documentation regarding good character."
Bornmann has also attempted to gain admission to the New York State bar as a lawyer and has passed the New York bar exam, as reported in 24 hours and this blog exclusively last month.
Bornmann's lawyer, Bryan Finlay, had asked in November 2006 to delay the "good character" hearing until after the Basi-Virk trial, which was then presumed would take place in the spring of 2007 but has since been delayed.
Finlay wrote on November 21, 2006 to the LSUC: "Consequently we would ask that this hearing be adjourned to July 2007 to set a date. It may be that if the criminal trial is further delayed, there will be a need to proceed with this Hearing without further delay. Erik's professional life cannot be held in abeyance for years."
Bornmann's lawyers had wanted the media and public excluded from the originally-scheduled hearing or a publication ban imposed. At that time Vancouver lawyer Dan Burnett said in an interview that his client, Global Television, was planning on arguing against such a ban or exclusion had the hearing proceeded.