Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Globe and Mail covers Tieleman and blogging/reporting on Basi-Virk

Today's Globe and Mail newspaper covers this humble blog and yours truly, with Tom Hawthorn's column kindly reporting on the case and my efforts to chronicle it.

You can read the
full article in the BC edition on page S3.

Here's just the start:

For this blogger, this case has just about everything

Covert photos. Mysterious witnesses. A billion dollars. 'We just need to add some sex and it would be perfect'


Special to The Globe and Mail;

February 27, 2008

VICTORIA -- The click-clicking of computer keys could be heard on the other end of the telephone line.

"I'm posting a Basi-Virk blog item as we speak. No rest for the wicked," Bill Tieleman said. He paused. "Four years without rest."

Sure enough, another 1,000-word item popped up on Most of it was the draft Hansard text of a statement in the legislature in which several newspaper articles were cited, as well as Mr. Tieleman's blog.

In this case, one man's blog recording a politician's statement in which the blog is mentioned is not so much self-indulgence as the laying of another brick in a building whose final size is as yet unknown.

Mr. Tieleman has become a regular at court as he covers the case as a columnist for the free daily newspaper 24 Hours. After spending hundreds of hours listening to pretrial wrangling, Mr. Tieleman's dispatch this week for the online newsmagazine opened with a riff on the old Twilight Zone theme........


Gazetteer said...

Hmmmmm......perhaps Mr. T. you should start making like the good Docktor Thompson with his Bass Ale and start taking a few bottles of your finest to the Studio 54 dance floor.

Heckfire - might even loosen things up and get the whole gange moving forward (in completely 'platonic' sort of way, of course)


Anonymous said...

I am tempted to post about a possible sex angle in this case but I am sure that it won't be posted.

Too bad....

Anonymous said...

Legislature raid case provokes a departure from tradition
Vaughn Palmer, Vancouver Sun, Thursday, February 28, 2008.

The alpha & omega quotes:

"Deputy attorney-general Allan Seckel issued a rare statement this week, clarifying his role in vetting material in the criminal proceedings arising out of the raid on the legislature."


"But in my reading, the deputy attorney-general's letter has diminished one of the outstanding concerns in this case, that cabinet secrecy would be invoked to prevent evidence from being aired in court."

Now we have to get the material that may be withheld on grounds of solicitor-client privilege... The BC Liberals seem to be forgetting that the people of BC are the client - NOT the temporary political office holders.

G West said...

There's a 'sex' angle to this case?

Please, don't hold back.

Budd Campbell said...

Perhaps the lack of a "sex angle" is what's keeping this story off the front pages and the main nitely newscasts?

Seriously, Bill, it's good to see the Globe giving your tireless coverage and the threats and harassments you've faced some coverage.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Don't know about the sex angle, but of course there is the drugs angle. One specific example was reported in the Times-Colonist just a month before the raid on the legislature when 2 kayakers full of marijuana on their way from Sidney to San Juan Island aborted their smuggling attempt and landed at two different coves in Victoria. One kayaker was apprehended by neighbors and arrested on the spot by police. The other landed at a cove beside the home of Manu Sandhu, Child and Family Development Ministerial Assistant at the time. The neighbors here helped the kayaker to get away: This kayaker was allowed to use a phone and call for someone to pick him and the kayak up before the cops arrived.

Here's the article...
U.S. kayaker faces drug charges
Norman Gidney
Victoria Times-Colonist
Nov 6, 2003

Police on lookout for second marijuana smuggler following a massive search-and-rescue effort

There never were any jet skiers zipping through the cold night in waters near Victoria, but one marijuana-stuffed kayak has turned into two. A young California man also faces criminal charges as police hunt for a second paddling

The case has also become a cross-border drug and immigration investigation, involving the RCMP "border integrity unit" and the U.S. Coast Guard "drug
interdiction team." Meanwhile, Canada holds the bill for an intensive but unnecessary air and marine search.

What police believe now was a failed drug-smuggling attempt started as a conventional search and rescue Tuesday morning when a man turned up on a suburban Saanich beach, in the exclusive Ten Mile Point area.

He told a resident that he'd fallen off his Jet Ski in the night after attempting a 35-kilometre ride from Sidney to Victoria in the dark, with
another man who was still missing.

His account fell apart under questioning later in the day, when police found his U.S. passport in a kayak "stuffed to the gunwales with marijuana." That
kayak was found grounded on rocks nearby. It also had a battery-powered outboard motor.

The 26-year-old from Novato, Calif., near San Francisco, admitted the kayak was
his, Saanich police Const. Chris Horsley said Wednesday.

"The first kayaker came clean and admitted there was a second kayaker."

He's being held for 48 hours on a Canada Immigration warrant, with the clock starting Tuesday night. Investigating officers planned to discuss with Crown counsel charges of possession of marijuana for trafficking, Horsley said.

The unusual story took another twist when a resident of another ritzy waterfront enclave, Gordon Point Estates, called police after seeing the TV news to tell them of a second beached kayaker who came ashore about the same time as the one initially reported. However this kayaker landed about six
kilometres north of the other one.

He came into resident's home, warmed up over coffee and borrowed the telephone to call friends to be picked up. The homeowner and other neighbours watched
later as two, possibly more, individuals pulled bags out of the kayak and hauled them and the boat away in a vehicle.

Police believe the one that got away was another marijuana smuggler. They went door to door in the neighbourhood asking residents who may have seen the
group, the kayak or their vehicle to call with details.

The cargo of the first kayak was 22 kilograms of what police said was top- quality hydroponically-grown B.C. marijuana, destined for the U.S. market. It had a street value of $2,500 per bag, Horsley said, for a total of $120,000.
"It was probably grown right here in Saanich," he said.

Steve Church at the Rescue Co-ordination Centre in Victoria couldn't estimate the cost of the search. "It would be quite a bit," he said.

A Buffalo aircraft from Comox flew for five hours, a U.S. Coast Guard
helicopter from Port Angeles, Wash. was up for half an hour over the search zone and five search vessels were on the water after the initial reports.

One of the coast guard auxiliary vessels, a rigid hull inflatable from Oak Bay, found part of the marijuana haul, 15 half-kilogram plastic-wrapped portions
inside a backpack-sized "dry bag" used in kayaking. It was probably
lashed to the deck of one kayak with bungee cords.

Ironically, even though the kayakers, made it to shore they actually may have encountered problems. "It is likely they got into some trouble," Horsley

The first kayak was full of water when found and it had probably turned over at one point.

They were out on the water in a south-flowing ebb tide. "The tides can be very strong out there," Horsley said.

San Juan Island in Washington state is visible not far away on the east side of Haro Strait, the kayakers' probable destination. Rumrunners ferried alcohol in
these same waters to the U.S. side during the 1920s prohibition era.

Anonymous said...

Sure, G.

The people got screwed.

Don't you remember?