Wednesday, May 05, 2010

SP's Gone Wild....Who, Exactly, Is Mike de Jong Frustrated With?


British Columbia's Attorney General, Mike de Jong, is miffed.....


Because he just can't figure out how or why Mr. Terrence Robertson came to be appointed as the Special Prosecutor to look into Kash Heed campaign irregularities given that Mr. Robertson's law firm donated money to that very campaign where those irregularities allegedly took place.

Here, in his own words, is Attorney General Mr. de Jong explaining his extreme miffedry to the VT-C's Rob Shaw:

“You don’t appoint someone to investigate a matter when a firm they are associated with has made a donation to the very campaign which is the subject of the investigation,” he said. “It’s surprising, frustrating and unacceptable to learn that appointment was made.”


Hang on a second....

Who is it, exactly, that ultimately approves the appointment of SP's in this province, based on the advice and recommendations of his staff, Mr. Attorney (and acting Solicitor) General?

And it is important to point out that Mr. Terrence Robertson was not an unknown quantity to the current AG and SG Ministerial staffs that Mr. de Jong oversees. After all, it was Mr. Robertson who acted as the SP in the recent very well-publicized Bountiful case, which is something that the law firm concerned, Harper Grey LLP, is itself still trumpeting on its website.



BC Mary said...


Who is it, you ask, that ultimately approves the appointment of Special Prosecutors in this province ...?"

I looked it up.

Ministry of the Attorney General

Only the head of B.C.’s Prosecution Service – the assistant deputy attorney general of the Criminal Justice Branch of the Ministry of Attorney General – has authority to appoint a special prosecutor and define the special prosecutor’s mandate.

Once appointed, special prosecutors are independent of B.C.’s prosecution service. ... If the Attorney General, the deputy attorney general or the assistant deputy attorney general wishes to intervene in the decisions of the special prosecutor, they would have to do so in writing and publish their directions in the B.C. Gazette, the official public legal record of government notices.

Robin Mathews has had things to say about the close proximity of key figures, most especially the Special Prosecutor, in the most important trial in BC history. He has formally objected and called for this type of peer review (to no avail, so far).

Robin's letters are in the archives at my place:

The Legislature Raids

RossK said...

Thank-you Mary.

I guess the next question to ask is the following.....

Who, specifically, in the CJB recommended Mr. Robertson's appointment as SP in this case in January of this year.

And, as a follow-up, did this person know that Harper Grey gave the BC Liberal party at least $17,000 in direct and exclusive donations in the run-up to the last provincial election?

And as a follow-up to the follow-up....If not, why not?


Gary E said...

One of the news stories I read recently (could be the G&M) said that the RCMP asked him if he thought he was in conflict. I'll try to find that statement. And I believe the RCMP involved was Sargent Bishop. Where have I heard that name before?

RossK said...


You are bang on...This tidbit is actually in Mr. Robertson's resignation letter which can be found buried within J. Hunter's Globe piece from this morning here.


Gary E said...

I found this in the Toronto Star

In his resignation letter, Robertson said he was aware of the campaign contribution all along but didn’t think it constituted a conflict of interest.

But after he was questioned by RCMP, he had a chance to reconsider.

“Given that charges were not approved against Kash Heed and upon further reflection, I have concluded that my continuing as special prosecutor on this matter may well provoke comment from the public and the media as to whether I am sufficiently independent,” wrote Robertson in a letter to assistant deputy attorney-general Robert Gillen

Now I'll look in the G&M for any difference in the spin.

Anonymous said...

Do a google search for sgt bud bishop and another for sergeant bud bishop.

Interesting things come up.

Ian said...

The Dep. AG Criminal Branch, Robert Gillan, makes the appointment. I always wonder about the conversation though, i.e. who makes the suggestions regarding appointments.

And then there are the donations. For example, a special prosecutor who has spent over five years now making decisions on a corruption case involving several cabinet members and government MLAs and makes decisions on the flow of information amongst others donated to Wally Oppal and the BC Liberal Party while in the middle of this job. How is that different than Robertson?

RossK said...

Thanks all for the added input.

Kinda makes the latest bit-o sophistry from The Dean moot, doncha think?