One of the crime scenes

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Almost Secret Hearing Held Yesterday

Last night, by chance, I found out via GlobalTV News that yesterday morning, May 10, Special Prosecuter Bill Beradino, defense lawyers for the Basis and Bob Virk and Justice Elizabeth Bennett met in the lobby of the Vancouver Courthouse practically at the break of dawn. They were so early that the elevators weren't working yet and they had to climb stairs to reach the courtroom. Apparently once they got to the courtroom the judge had to enter without anyone there yet to say "Please Rise," as they had arrived before any court staff. Now who called the hearing and why it was so almost undercover isn't clear this morning in the wee hours.

The only mention I've been able to find in print online so far is an information free 95 word article from Canadian Press published identically in the Sun, Province and Times-Colonist. This article had less information than the brief item on the TeeVee news and even though it said very little that was new, it did create some discrepancies with the TeeVee item which was actually more informative.

As far as I can tell at this point the special prosecutor wanted to ask for a delay in starting the trial. Citing disclosure issues and the difficulty of dealing with the boxes of documents Mr. Beradino feels it is impossible for the Crown to be ready to go to trial on June 5. Mr. Beradino stressed that Operation EveryWhichWay was a complex investigation with many threads. He also specifically mentioned a seperate but related investigation which he was "not willing to identify at this time." The special prosecutor asked for the trial to be set back to December 1. Justice Bennett pointed out that the first being a Friday she would set a new trial date of December 4.

Lawyers from all sides when asked for comments as they were leaving the courthouse, about the time it was opening for normal (non Star Chamber) court business would say little other than they couldn't comment because it was "before the courts." This observer wonders if it might not be more appropriate to say that whatever was and is going on is hiding behind the courts - I'm just saying. They've already succeeded in keeping this under the rug long enough that it wouldn't affect one election. I doubt if they think they can stall long enough to breeze through yet another, but maybe they they think they can stall long enough to allow them to sell off the remaining assets of the citizens of British Columbia.

I can't help but find suspicious all these delays and secrecy. Best case scenario, it's a complex tricky investigation and the Crown is crossing all their t's and dotting all the i's. Worst case - the government (who is involved, even if only because it was their aides that they hired), the courts and the special prosecutor (who was after all appointed by the government) are doing their best to make it all go away.

The Canadian Press article which is safe for those with information allergies can be found here. According to this article the parties are scheduled to meet next on June 13.


Blogger Imperador said...

Come to know my new Kingdom...

Thursday, May 11, 2006 at 2:51:00 AM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who did you see, on Global TV, recounting the details of this bizarre scene at the Vancouver Court House?

Whoever it was, had to have been called in advance, had to be waiting for them in the lobby of the court house, had to be special enough to chum along with them, right up into the court room. Whoever it was, had to be walking and talking with Judge Bennett, the special prosecutor, and the defense lawyers. Like part of the judiciary, almost.

But ... but then, this person goes on Global TV and describes it all ... ? Huh??

And who was there to record Berardino's request? and Judge Bennett's decision?

And don't judges have their own super-special entrance to the Vancouver Court House?

While we all thank you for this insight, it does have a strange, unreal feel to it.

Monday, May 15, 2006 at 3:32:00 PM PDT  

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