Western Standard

The Shotgun Blog

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

WS Poll: Should there be an inquiry into the actions of police during G20?

Here's a little (unscientific, but fun) poll related to, for example, this debate between Tim Hudak and Randy Hillier:

To see the map, that screws up our blog formatting, but is interesting to look at, check below the fold:

Posted by westernstandard on July 13, 2010 in Canadian Politics, Crime, Freedom of expression, G20 | Permalink | Comments (14)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Illegal Photo Radar AGAIN

Who are these knucklehead bureaucrats that run the Winnipeg City Police?

Earlier this year there was a huge blow up in Manitoba about construction zone photo radar tickets being issued when no workers were actually present in the construction zone. Manitoba Provicinal Court judge Norm Sundstrom ruled that:

Although the drivers had exceeded the 60 km/h limit, they were not going faster than the regular 80 km/h speed limit for that particular roadway. With no workers present, the regular speed limit should apply

This court ruling has not been challenged or over turned, and the crown chose not to appeal the decision. The government also decided that they would not refund anyone who paid the illegally issues tickets.

Yet last weekend, Larry Stefaniuk of Wise Up Winnipeg.com and Traffic Ticket Guru.com caught the Winnipeg Police Service breaking the law by using photo enforcement in a construction zone when there were no workers present!

More evidence that not only does the government not follow their own rules, and are looking for cash grabs, but that they can break the law and nothing at all will happen to them.

Here's an idea. How about the Winnipeg police Service spend their time dealing with the gangs and violent activity in Winnipeg where there are real victims, and leave peaceful people alone.




I welcome feedback and I ask for civility in the exchange of comments. Vulgarity is discouraged. Please express yourself creatively with other language. We discuss ideas here, attacks on a person are discouraged.

Posted by Freedom Manitoba on October 15, 2009 in Canadian Provincial Politics, Crime | Permalink | Comments (36)

Friday, September 18, 2009

Cops Are Drug War Victims

So states a Washington Post op-ed. Here is an interview with the authors of that op-ed, one of which is a member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition.




I welcome feedback and I ask for civility in the exchange of comments. Vulgarity is discouraged. Please express yourself creatively with other language. We discuss ideas here, attacks on a person are discouraged.

Posted by Freedom Manitoba on September 18, 2009 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (66)

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Brothel Bust

Prostitution, the act of having sex for money, is not illegal in Canada, nor should it be. But most of the acts surrounding consensual sex for money is illegal;

Last week in Winnipeg, two people were charged with running a brothel.

A number of rooms within the residence were being rented to sex-trade workers for illegal sexual activity, police said. As well, one of the occupants of the home was allegedly involved in the sex trade and directly involved with the other sex-trade workers by way of booking appointments for the consumers, police said.

This sounds like a business to me, a business run on consensual sex.

"These individuals were acting in a sense almost as managers. They were running a facility, and not only were they running the facility, they were benefitting by way of allowing individuals to attend and use the residence for sexual acts," alleged police spokesman Const. Jason Michalyshen.

And now those folks will move to the street, or another brothel. These actions don't stop prostitution, it just makes criminals out of the participants. This was a home that offered controls and a safe environment for people to do their business, moving it to the street provides much more risk to the people involved.

Because of the prohibited activities that surround prostitution it is difficult to engage in it without breaking any laws. Perhaps that is the purpose that some of these moralists have, to make it more difficult and force their morals onto other people. While it might do that, it doesn't stop people from participating in it, just makes it more dangerous.

Perhaps you don't approve of prostitution, that is fine, don't participate in it. Consensual sex is the business of those people involved in the transaction, whether it be for cash, for popularity, or whatever motivations people may have. If you expect the freedom to choose who you have sex with, then you need to afford others that same freedom, no matter their motivation.

As is often heard, people in the neighborhood where this home was located were unaware of the illegal activity.

(Neighbor Shelly )Mure said Stiles Street is quiet and family-friendly and that she was surprised to hear of the arrests.

Tanya Warrikow grew up on Stiles and described it in the same way as Mure. It is because of that quiet, safe feel that she returned there to raise her own family. But news of the brothel has tainted that image.

If brothels weren't prohibited then they could set-up as legitimate business in non-residential areas; doing that in the current climate is difficult.

With all of the gang activity and real criminals in Winnipeg, the Winnipeg Police Service continues to investigate and go after people involved in consensual so-called "crimes" such as the sex trade, and you and I are forced to pay for it.




I welcome feedback and I ask for civility in the exchange of comments. Vulgarity is discouraged. Please express yourself creatively with other language. We discuss ideas here, attacks on a person are discouraged.

Posted by Freedom Manitoba on September 12, 2009 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (5)

Monday, August 24, 2009

Curfews in Killarney

The town of Killarney Manitoba has seen a recent rise in vandalism in the town of 3300 people and a curfew for people 17 years old and younger has been proposed in order to deal with it.

"They're out jumping around on rooftops on Main Street; they've been dancing around on a few vehicles," (Mayor Rick Pauls) said. "We've had some of our picnic tables and park benches thrown into our lake."

Sounds like some laws are being broken there. If there are already laws being broken, then why the curfew? Shouldn't these folks be handled for the crimes they already committed?

This is a lazy way to police people. It punishes the many for the acts of the few, which is not fair nor just. It also marks everyone in that town of a certain age range as a criminal, which is collectivist and disturbing. Individuals are causing the harm, not entire age groups.

Plus, the government has no right to tell entire age groups that they can't be in public. This is public property, they own a piece of it. Why the cut-off at 17? It's because 18 is an "adult" and for some reason they feel that they can pick on people under 18, but oh no, once you're 18 you are magically transformed into an adult and have personal responsibility.

The Charter of Rights and Freedoms says;

2. Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms: (c) freedom of peaceful assembly

Unless of course, you are aged 0-17 and live in Killarney Manitoba.

Posted by Freedom Manitoba on August 24, 2009 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (67)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Traffic Enforcement Quotas

There have long been rumours about police forces having "quotas" with regards to the number of tickets handed out for various traffic infractions. The Winnipeg Police Service recently told their officers that they need to keep up with writing traffic tickets in order to sustain past revenue levels.

Police Chief Keith McCaskill confirmed Friday that a memorandum was issued to all members of the force, including tactical squad members, reminding them that traffic enforcement is part of their duties.

Revenue from traffic tickets has dropped 70 per cent this year compared to 2008, said the chief.

While this isn't so much a confirmation of quotas, it does demonstrate that the police aren't as interested in public safety as they are about revenue collection. An example is given in the same CBC article of motorist Chris Albi, who was dinged with an $800 bill for doing nothing but peacefully driving to work.

Winnipegger Chris Albi isn't impressed with the fundraising initiative. She got three tickets Friday morning.

Albi was on her way to work a local food bank when she saw the flashing lights from a police cruiser in her mirror. The officer approached the car and Albi confessed she probably had rolled through a stop sign, and she told the officer that probably her insurance had expired at midnight the previous night.

The officer issued three citations in all and the whole affair took more than 40 minutes.

"If police are trying to build rapport with the community, well … there was no flexibility, not really any discussion," said Albi.

The tickets totalled about $800.

So who did Albi hurt by rolling through a stop sign, and by having expired insurance? In reality no one was harmed. By giving her $800 in tickets no one was prevented from being harmed either; but she has been victimized by the state demanding nearly $1000 from her for not obeying their arbitrarily enforced rules. Having expired paperwork is not a crime against any living person, it is only a crime against the concept of the state, which demands that you have the paperwork "or else".

No victim, no crime.

I love comments. I ask for civility in the exchange of comments. Vulgarity is discouraged. Please express yourself creatively with other language. We discuss ideas here, attacks on a person are discouraged.

Posted by Freedom Manitoba on August 12, 2009 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (77)

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Kids Driving Cars and the Nanny State

Cops are going after a man in Quebec who let his 7 year old son drive the family car with several members of the family inside, including what looks like a 3-4 year old girl. The father posted the video on YouTube and it has led "authorities" to investigate the man.

In the following CBC report, they say that the father has come out and "apologized" and mentioned that his son never went over 40km/hr, that it occurred 2 years ago, and that they were on a deserted back road. This man has also said that he is willing to meet with police to discuss the matter.

That is a mistake. The police are saying that if it did actually happen 2 years ago that it wouldn't be possible to lay any highway code violations. BUT, it is not too late for Quebec's Child Protection Services to get involved. Not only was a 7 year old driving, but no one on camera was wearing a seat belt and the young girl in the backseat was not in a car seat. By talking to the Police they have the possibility of admitting something that will lead CPS to come in and take their kids away. It is the Nanny State telling you how to live, and if you don't do what they want then they will hurt you.

Which leads me to this point; who was harmed by this act? No one was harmed, it was a family prank. Was it negligent? Maybe. Was it dangerous? Maybe. Is it my business to tell these people what to do with their lives? Nope. Is it the governments business? Well, they will make it their business, that is a result of the Nanny state, because bureaucrats know better than you do what you should do with your lives.

I love comments. I ask for civility in the exchange of comments. Vulgarity is discouraged. Please express yourself creatively with other language. We discuss ideas here, attacks on a person are discouraged.

Posted by Freedom Manitoba on August 5, 2009 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (18)

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Greyhound bus killer will spend another year in mental ward

Vincent Li, the man found not criminally responsible for beheading Tim McLean on a Greyhound bus last summer, will be locked up for at least another year, but his incarceration will be subject to a yearly review:

Carol deDelley is absolutely right.

"This whole situation, pardon my French, has been bull----. We've never received justice throughout this whole thing and I'm not sure we're ever going to. So we'll fight for it," the mother of Tim McLean told the Winnipeg Sun Wednesday night.

Her comments followed news that Vincent Li -- who was found not criminally responsible for the brutal killing of McLean last July aboard a Greyhound bus -- will remain locked up inside a mental health ward, under heavy security, for at least another year.

John Stefaniuk, head of the Criminal Code review board that heard Li's case, also said the 40-year-old who suffers from severe schizophrenia will be heavily monitored if he should leave the facility and will be accompanied by staff workers and peace officers at all times.

The ruling is no surprise because all of these suggestions were made by Li's psychiatrist at a hearing held this week. The only other choices the board likely had were to release Li outright with no conditions, or some kind of a conditional release.

To add to the "kangaroo court" feel to this whole thing, Stefaniuk said the board is expected to take several months before even deciding if the reasons for their ruling will be made public.

The fact that Li will get a yearly review to determine whether he's well enough to be released highlights the justice system's failure to protect ordinary Canadians. This policy of protecting the perpetrators of crime over the rights of victims and the public is an extension of the Trudeau government's policy of stressing rehabilitation, even if criminals have the potential to claim more innocent victims.

"Too many Canadians… disregard the fact that the correctional process aims at making the offender a useful and law-abiding citizen, and not any more an individual alienated from society and in conflict with it.… Consequently, we have decided from now on to stress the rehabilitation of individuals rather than protection of society," said Liberal Solicitor General Jean Pierre Goyer in the House of Commons in 1971.

38 years later, we are faced with a justice system that is seemingly unable to provide Tim McLean's family with any sort of justice whatsoever. First, we were unable to convict Mr. Li of murder for this horrible crime. And why? Because he successfully used the mental disorder defence, claiming he was not criminally responsible for his actions. In other words, it's not his fault because he's insane. Of course he's insane! Sane individuals don't go around decapitating people. In cases like this, insanity should be an obvious fact, not a defence.

If this wasn't bad enough, McLean's family will have to relive this every year. They will also have to face the prospect that Li will soon be released into the community, where he could easily snap and force some other innocent family to face the same hardship. Is it not time to start putting public safety and victims rights before the rights of those who would murder innocent people?

Posted by Jesse Kline on June 6, 2009 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (14)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Is abortion a mental illness?

I believe most mothers no matter the circumstance want to love their children. And that it is highly unusual for a mom to bear a child and not love that child. This is in part why abortion is an affront to women...to their dignity and personhood, because it denies what is natural and normal–sex, leading to pregnancy, leading to children.

So when a baby is born, and the mom immediately kills that baby of her own volition, what am I to understand?

I have a couple of different responses swimming around in my head (along with the cold virus that hit yesterday):

She should be blamed and take responsibility.

She must be mentally ill to do such a thing.

Or she is following the abortion-friendly culture we have? Five minutes before birth in a sanctified legal clinic and this would not be in the news.

(Cross-posted to ProWomanProLife)

Posted by Andrea Mrozek on April 22, 2009 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (57)

Monday, February 09, 2009

Are B.C. judges too soft?

Are B.C. judges too soft? When violent criminals receive house arrest, and when chronic thieves with scores of convictions find themselves on the streets again and again to commit the same crimes over and over again, it's no surprise that many British Columbians certainly believe so. But this new study, commissioned by the B.C. government, suggests judges in Canada's westernmost provinces are not out of step with those in the rest of the country.

A pertinent declaration from the report's executive summary: "We are left, then, on the one hand with the belief held by many that sentences in British Columbia are more lenient than sentences in Canada as a whole. On the other hand, we have presented detailed date in our full report which...suggest otherwise."

Well, then, maybe it's true that courts throughout the country are too soft on criminals. We await a detailed report into this...

Posted by Terry O'Neill on February 9, 2009 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (6)

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Selective prosecution of illegal 'conjugal unions'

The B.C. government announced today that is is charging two Morman polygamists under Section 293.1.ii of the Criminal Code of Canada, which makes it illegal for anyone to enter into "any kind of conjugal union with more than one person at the same time, whether or not it is by law recognized as a binding form of marriage..."

Does this mean B.C. Attorney General Wally Oppal is now preparing to crack down on straight "swingers" clubs and gay bathhouses too, both of which, by definition or practice, facilitate "conjugal union with more than one person at the same time" -- in some cases, quite literally at the same time?

Something tells me that Oppal won't open that can of worms; it's much safer, it seems, to tackle a religious cult whose male leaders have been likened to child abusers.

Posted by Terry O'Neill on January 7, 2009 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (5)

Monday, December 15, 2008

Australia's gun laws don’t reduce homicides or suicides: study

New research on Australia's gun laws published in the Sydney University journal Current Issues in Criminal Justice examines the strengths and weaknesses of a series of papers on Australia’s firearms legislation, and highlights “best-practice approaches to evidence-based policymaking.”

What is the conclusion of the report? Two things. First, there is no evidence that gun laws save lives. Second, “anti-gun extremists” rely of flimsy evidence.

According to study co-author and International Coalition for Women in Shooting and Hunting (WiSH) chair Dr. Samara McPhedran, "the studies all point in the same direction - no impact on firearm homicide, and no conclusions about firearm suicides because non-firearm suicides were also falling."

The report challenges the methodology of the available research on Australia’s gun control laws. "Sound policy relies on the quality and weight of the evidence. Our study shows that quality and weight of evidence does not come from ‘flimsy evidence appearing real.’ This is a predictable trick of anti-gun extremists, who present flawed conclusions designed to cause fear,” concluded McPhedran.

Posted by Matthew Johnston

Posted by westernstandard on December 15, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (11) | TrackBack

Friday, December 12, 2008

Prison Parenting Program: Can you be pro-family and pro-incarceration?

The British Columbia Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) is calling on the B.C. provincial government to reinstate the mother-child program at the Alouette Correctional Centre for Women.  The prison parenting program was cancelled in April of this year. 

British Columbia’s Representative for Children and Youth has called for the reinstatement of the program and a legal action has been launched on behalf of five incarcerated women affected by the program’s cancellation.

Megan Vis-Dunbar with the BCCLA today said “The loss of the mother-child program in correctional facilities is an unjustified infringement on the rights of both the parents and the children.  Apprehending newborns from female inmates causes serious harm to the child’s psychological and emotional development and profound psychological stress to the parent.  In addition, these harms disproportionately affect Aboriginal women and children because of the over- representation of Aboriginal women in Canadian prisons.”

When mothers are incarcerated the Ministry of Children and Family Development apprehends the children when family members are not available to take on the responsibility. According to the BCCLA, woman often have to take legal action to regain custody of children who have been placed in foster care during their incarceration.  Under the BC Child Family and Community Services Act , a child under five years-old who has been in temporary care for over 12 months automatically becomes a ward of the state and may be put up for adoption.

“The loss of this program is devastating to vulnerable families.  Single mothers who are incarcerated must have the option of being able to reside with their infant children.  Anything less is inconsistent with our commitments under the UN Declaration of Rights of the Child, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms,” said Vis-Dunbar.

The question, of course, is whether or not the incarcerated mothers are fit to parent. Non-violent criminals who run afoul of the law may be fit to parent, while violent criminals may not.

Separating children from their parents, however, must surely only be done as a last resort.

Posted by Matthew Johnston on December 12, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (9) | TrackBack

Police personnel and expenditures grow, crime solving performance flat: StatsCan

According to Statistics Canada data released today, Canada had just over 65,000 police officers as of May 15, 2008. Following a period of general decline throughout the 1990s, police strength has generally increased over the past decade. At 196 officers per 100,000 population, the 2008 rate was 1% higher than in 2007 and 8% higher than a decade earlier.

Over the past 10 years, all provinces recorded increases in their police strength, with the largest being in Newfoundland and Labrador (+21%) and Nova Scotia (+17%).

Saskatchewan and Manitoba reported the highest rate of police officer strength in 2008 while Alberta and Prince Edward Island had the lowest.

Since 1998, all 27 census metropolitan areas, except for Victoria, recorded increases in police strength. The largest gains were reported in Sherbrooke (+26%) and St. Catharines–Niagara (+23%).

In 2008, Thunder Bay had the most police per 100,000 population, followed by Saint John and Regina.

Among the nine largest metropolitan areas, rates of police strength were highest in Montréal and Winnipeg.

The number of female officers increased at a faster pace than their male counterparts, continuing a trend that began in the mid-1970s. Canada had just over 12,200 female officers in 2008, up 3% from the previous year. The number of male officers increased 2%.

Women accounted for almost 1 in every 5 officers in 2008, compared with about 1 in 8 a decade earlier.

The per-capita increase in police personnel has done little, however, to improve crime solving performance. In 2007, police solved 37% of crimes reported to them, compared with 35% a decade ago.

After adjusting for inflation, police expenditures rose for the 11th consecutive year, reaching $10.5 billon in 2007, or $320 for every Canadian. To put this security cost in perspective, private alarm companies charge between $120 - $360 per year after a one-time charge for installation.

Posted by Matthew Johnston on December 12, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Sunday, October 19, 2008

More Gun Totin' Facts

Scott Dagonstino, a contributor to Xtra magazine mentioned concealed carry weapons in this past week's issue - unfortunately, not positively. My response to Xtra is posted below:

I think it is Scott Dagonstino who lives in a Hollywood fantasy with his view towards firearms in his article “Open Season on Homos”- where he referred to my discussion of concealed-carry weapons permits.  I couldn’t help but notice the irony of the headline of an article in the same Xtra issue, “Hate crimes laws ineffective – Sentences are no deterrent to bashers”.  So there we have it, reliance on government to protect our community does not work.

I would like Scott to put aside his Hollywood images, as well as his emotions and look at the facts of allowing carry concealed weapons (CCW) permits and how they are a proven deterrent to criminals:

After passing their concealed carry law, Florida's homicide rate fell from 36% above the national average to 4% below, and remains below the national average.  In Texas, murder rates fell 50% faster than the national average in the year after their concealed carry law passed.  Rape rates fell 93% faster in the first year after enactment, and 500% faster in the second.  Assaults fell 250% faster in the second year.  In fact as the number of firearms owned by citizens has been increasing steadily since 1970, the overall rate of homicides and suicides has not risen.  Crime has decreased faster in the 47 states that have CCW permits.

David Miller is advocating a citywide gun ban, and petitioning for a nationwide gun-ban.  Let us look at what would happen if that became a reality:

Washington D.C. has essentially banned gun ownership since 1976 and has a murder rate of 56.9 per 100,000. Across the river in Arlington, Virginia, gun ownership is less restricted.  There, the murder rate is just 1.6 per 100,000, less than three percent of the Washington, D.C. rate. In 1968, the U.K. passed laws that reduced the number of licensed firearm owners, and thus reduced firearm availability.  Their homicide rate has steady risen since then.  Ironically, firearm use in crimes has doubled in the decade after the U.K. banned handguns.  Australia and New Zealand have reduce restrictions on firearms after crimes when up.  An unarmed population is a helpless population.

If self-anointed GBLT leaders and activists are serious about reducing hate crimes, discussing CCW permits should be on the table for discussion.  CCW laws prevent 2.5 millions crimes in the U.S. every year.  Every day 550 rapes, 1,100 murders and 5,200 other violent crimes are prevented by just showing a gun.  In less than 0.9% of these instances is a gun actually fired.  The facts speak for themselves, like the slogan for the Pink Pistols - armed gays don’t get bashed.  When will these leaders put their emotions and far-left agenda to the side, and put their GBLT community first?


Chris Reid
"Controversial" former Toronto Centre
Conservative Party Candidate

Posted by Chris Reid on October 19, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (19) | TrackBack

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Canadians question Harper Conservatives' drug strategy

If Stephen Harper is serious about reducing violence and organized crime, he should be working towards repealing marijuana prohibition, not imposing minimum sentences for possession.

Red Deer's CHCA News has the story:

Posted by Kalim Kassam on October 4, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (70) | TrackBack

Sunday, September 28, 2008

How to Handle Hate Crimes

Frankly, I hate the phrase "hate crime."  I don't like the idea that we ought to distinguish crimes from one another based, simply, upon the identity of the victim or, as a class, based upon the motivation for the crime.  Assaulting someone because you don't like their face seem to me to be morally equivalent to attacking them because you don't like their race.

Where motivations ought to come in, I would say, is in considering punishments.  That's one of the real tragedy of our justice system - is that judges don't have the freedom to impose creative punishments.

For example, in the case of this latest gay bashing in Vancouver, I think that one can make an ideal case for corporal punishment.

Let's face it - prisons don't really work.  People don't learn anything because they spend a brief amount of time locked up.  The way to deter this from happening in the future is to sentence the perpetrator to a public flogging on Davie Street.

Posted by Adam T. Yoshida on September 28, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Friday, August 29, 2008

Feds “invests” $20 million to stop the unregulated trade in tobacco: Natives and the smoking poor disproportionately affected

When health related news is released by the Minister of National Revenue, you can be quite sure that revenue, and not health, is what is really at issue.

National Revenue Minister Gordon O'Connor today announced a $20 million “investment” over the next four years to “combat contraband tobacco and its damaging effects on the health of Canadians.”

Since contraband tobacco has no more “damaging effects on the health of Canadians” than taxed and regulated tobacco, my guess is that the “damaging effects” are on government revenues.

On July 31, Minister O'Connor announced that that he and the provinces had come to a settlement concerning tobacco smuggling. Imperial Tobacco and Rothmans, Benson & Hedges were forced to pay $1.15 billion to the governments in fines and civil settlements for their role in “aiding persons to sell or be in possession of tobacco products manufactured in Canada that were not packaged and were not stamped in conformity with the Excise Act and its amendments and the ministerial regulations,” between 1989 and 1994.

Yes, that’s right, tobacco companies were found guilty of selling tobacco without giving Gordon "Mad Dog" O'Connor and the Capital Hill gang a taste of the action.

This $20 million announcement is intended to put an end to this kind of unregulated commerce.

O'Connor said “Contraband tobacco negatively affects all Canadians and our Government is determined to fight the problem.”

But contraband tobacco doesn’t negatively affect all Canadians.  In fact, it positively affects low income smokers who can spend significantly less on tobacco and, thereby, spend significantly more on other priorities.

In his column “Support Native resistance,” libertarian scholar Pierre Lemieux wrote:

Cigarettes manufactured and sold on Native reserves are priced as low as $6 per carton. This compares to more than $65 elsewhere in the country, the outrageous legal prices being due to federal and provincial taxes....

It is thanks to the Natives that five or ten per cent of the population can purchase affordable cigarettes and that the smokers of legal cigarettes are not taxed even more....the Natives are helping to satisfy...consumer demands.

This Conservative crackdown on unregulated tobacco commerce is an attack on Natives and the smoking poor -- and it's a misallocation of law enforcement resources.

Posted by Matthew Johnston on August 29, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (25) | TrackBack

Thursday, August 28, 2008

ELFs and ALFs strike again

Canada's most persistent domestic terrorists have struck again, this time in B.C.'s Fraser Valley.

See also my Western Standard story of two years ago, describing how these outlaws had spent the summer running riot in Ontario.

Posted by Terry O'Neill on August 28, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Western Standard exclusive: Investigative reporter and documentary film maker exposes the ongoing injustice of the Stonechild case

In February 2000, 25-year-old Jason Roy contacted the Saskatoon StarPhoenix to report the results of his “visualization exercise” nine years early in 1991, during which he claims he remembered seeing Neil Stonechild in a police cruiser the night before the aboriginal youth was found frozen to death in 1990.

On Friday, August 29th, investigative reporter and documentary film maker Candis McLean will reveal, exclusively for Western Standard readers, a report on how this unsubstantiated, decade-old personal account of the Stonechild incident from Roy, a juvenile delinquent who was admittedly drunk at the time, destroyed the careers of two Saskatoon cops.

Speaking out for the first time, former Saskatoon police chief Dave Scott is calling the Stonechild case “the biggest injustice ever perpetrated in this province.”

McLean first covered the Stonechild case for the Western Standard in December 2004 in “Case (not) closed.” In June, the Stonechild case was in the news again when the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal dismissed an application to throw out the results of the public inquiry into the freezing death of Stonechild. The two police officers implicated in the death had sought to quash Justice Wright’s conclusions about their role, saying it was outside the scope of the investigation. Larry Hartwig and Brad Senger were fired from the Saskatoon Police Service after the inquiry's report was released.

Some legal and law enforcement experts believe “Justice Wright…chose to overstep the boundaries of his mandate and to draw conclusions he was not entitled to draw.”  They also question the evidence used to build a case against Hartwig and Senger in this highly charged political inquiry.

Don’t miss “The Stonechild stink test” investigative report by Candis McLean and retired Saskatoon Police Service Cst. Larry Lockwood.

Posted by Matthew Johnston on August 28, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Conrad Black Appeal Denied

I haven't read the court order, but this story suggests that the 7th Circuit denied a rehearing by the original panel and an en banc rehearing also. That would mean, as the story points out, that the only avenue left is an appeal to the Supreme Court of the United States. The odds of that happening are very slim, but we won't know for sure till the cert denied is issued.

When I have spoken about the Black case, many Canadians, including non-supporters of Black, express their shock that he could have been convicted. I usually reply by expressing my shock at their shock!  This is because, unfortunately, the trend towards overcriminalization (as many have called it) of corporate and regulatory law started over 60 years ago. The Supreme Court of the United States abolished the ancient substantive safeguard of mens rea (as opposed to the procedural safeguards in the Bill of Rights) for regulatory crimes in United States v. Dotterweich. Mens rea, which means "evil mind", or basically the intent to commit the crime, was an ancient requirement that no man may be charged with and convicted of a crime unless the state could prove that he intended to commit the crime and actually did it.

In the Dotterweich case, the manager and president of a company was criminally charged when his company shipped adulterated and mislabeled drugs in interstate commerce even though the president did not personally know of the violation. The Court upheld his conviction, and admitted that the abolition of requiring intent might visit hardship upon those whose “consciousness of wrongdoing [is] totally wanting,” but went on to justify this new rule by stating that when “[b]alancing [the] relative hardships, Congress has preferred to place it upon those who have at least the opportunity of informing themselves of conditions imposed for the protection of consumers.”

So that is how it all starts - the poor hapless consumers! The state can essentially justify anything it wants to do in the name of the poor hapless consumers. (I always wonder why no central-planners get charged when there is a government screw-up like the latest bad meat breakout.)

For more on why mens rea is important, you can read my (and my co-author Craig Lerner's) Regulation piece here.

Posted by Moin A Yahya on August 21, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (11) | TrackBack

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Frontline drug warriors are losing faith in prohibition. Are there any true believers left?

Tony Smith is a retired Vancouver cop and a spokesperson in Canada for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP). Founded on March 16, 2002, LEAP is made up of current and former members of the law enforcement and criminal justice communities who are opposed to drug prohibition. Many of LEAP’s 10,000 members were on the front lines of the war on drugs and today have the passion found only in a convert to reform what they believe is a broken system.

While people like Smith are rare, they are not entirely new to the Canadian political scene. Canadians may remember Vancouver cop Gil Puder. Puder died of cancer in 1999 at the age of 40, but not before making his mark in the movement to end drug prohibition.

While still a member of the Vancouver Police Force, Puder made a presentation called "Recovering Our Honour: Why Policing Must Reject the War on Drugs" at a Fraser Institute conference in 1998.

Puder was threatened with discipline from his employer for his participation in the drug conference, and the Fraser Institute drew criticism from some of its conservative supporters, including sitting Reform Party Member of Parliament Art Hanger, now a Conservative representative.

In the end, though, the Fraser Institute published “Sensible Solutions to the Urban Drug Problem” in 2002 which included a posthumous contribution from Puder.

This watershed publication challenged the Canadian conservative movement to rethink the war on drugs, making opposition to prohibition at least a tolerable eccentricity.

To learn whether or not the political climate today is better or worse for drug law reformers like Tony Smith, however, you’ll have to read “Canada takes a LEAP forward in drug reform advocacy” here.

Posted by Matthew Johnston on August 14, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (48) | TrackBack

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Stockwell Day, electronic ankle bracelets and the war on drugs

Gps_device When Minister of Public Safety Stockwell Day announced this week that the federal government is launching a pilot program in September to electronically monitor federal offenders, I didn’t know quite what to think.

On the one hand, they are criminals. On the other hand, GPS ankle bracelets sound Orwellian.

I immediately asked the BC Civil Liberties Association for their perspective. I was told they have “no comment at this time” and to “try back in couple of months.”

Fair enough, I guess. They want to do their research and watch how the program develops.

Not to be deterred, I asked Dennis Young, the Leader of Libertarian Party, for a quote.

Young said “I don’t have a problem using technology to keep track of criminals. I would only insist that the program be restricted to dangerous, violent offenders. Who do the Conservatives plan to monitor once the pilot is done? Do we know the scope of the plan for federal offenders?”

Good questions.

The program will start modesty with the tagging of 30 parolees in Ontario. If any of the subjects violate their curfews or go places they are not supposed to go, the GPS ankle bracelets will alert the authorities.

AHN reported that “Day said the 30 prisoners would include a mixture of sexual and serious offenders.” Not your run-of-the-mill criminals.

The Nova Scotia provincial government has been using electronic monitoring ankle bracelets since 2006 and, according to a Canadian Press story, only about “55 people on conditional sentence release are wearing the ankle bracelets out of about 500 or so former inmates charged with everything from sexual offences to fraud.”

So it looks like the ankle bracelet monitoring program has been used with some restraint so far.

So should civil libertarians be concerned?


I spoke to the operations director Mike Smithson with Law Enforcement Against Prohibition this morning who argued, speaking primarily about the US situation, that the electronic monitoring of federal offenders may be an unintended consequence of the war on drugs. As we fill our prisons with drug offenders, law enforcement is forced to come up with ways to monitor violent criminals they can’t afford to house. The electronic ankle bracelet is a good solution to the problem of overcrowded prisons, but does it allow politicians and law enforcement to ignore a bigger problem -- the failure of drug prohibition?

Posted by Matthew Johnston on August 13, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (31) | TrackBack

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Money and cocaine

The police usually use dogs to sniff for drugs. When a dog identifies you as a possible target, the police are justified in stopping and searching you (I am simplifying here). But what if I were to tell you that most cash has traces of cocaine in them? What does that do to the validity of dog sniffs? Basically the cash we carry contains traces of cocaine, so good luck the next time a dog wags at you - it could just be the cash in your pocket!

Posted by Moin A Yahya on August 6, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Sunday, August 03, 2008

The Death Penalty: A Winning Issue for Harper

If Stephen Harper wants to win a majority government, he should promise to bring back the death penalty.

Read the reactions to the brutal murder committed by a Chinese migrant in Manitoba last week. Pushing for the death penalty – in limited circumstances – in response to this would be a popular move that would spur discussion well outside of political circles.

I mean, let’s get real – this is a debate that we want to have. The death penalty for head hackers? Yes, or no. Frame it that way, and it’s a winning issue. Let the Liberals, the NDP, the Greens, and the Bloc explain the inherent human worth of something that cuts people’s heads off and starts eating them.

Yes, I know that some people here are against the death penalty on basic principle. Either because they believe that killing is wrong or, alternatively, because they believe that the state shouldn’t have the power to kill.

But, come on – when you stab an innocent man on a bus, hack off his head, and then begin to eat parts of him in front of the police, you deserve to die. Even if you, unlike me, subscribe to some theory that holds that all human lives have intrinsic value, I submit to you that the continued existence of a creature such as Weiguang Li deprives the human race of some measure of dignity. Monsters such as this should be written out of the human race as a collective means of reaffirming our own humanity. When applied to someone like that thing, or to Robert Pickton, or to Paul Bernardo, or to Clifford Olsen (or to whoever is setting loose all of these human feet that keep washing up), the death penalty is a wonderful and life-affirming thing. It is a way of expressing a collective judgement that some things are unworthy of being deemed human.

The power of death – in limited circumstances – over beasts is a power that the state, as the force collectively empowered to exercise certain rights on our behalf – absolutely ought to and must have. I submit to you that, if we were acting by the laws of nature, the natural and just thing to do would have been for the other passengers on the bus to arm themselves (or, ideally, already be armed) and to kill Li right there on the spot. That they did not do so is a reflection of the social contract – we have signed away our individual rights to use force for the purposes of extracting justice and invested them in the state. The state, as a matter of natural law, has not only the right – but also the duty – to kill people who in the state of nature would be justly killed.

This is a power – and a right – more fundamental than others. The basic reason for the existence of the state is the regulation of violence. In the state of nature, man will justly kill man for many causes – and other men will recognize the justice of those causes.


In a basic moral sense – whether one subscribes to a utilitarian, Kantian, or whatever view of the world – killing for cause can absolutely be justified. Indeed, while – obviously – it is easy to justify killing someone like Li or Olsen from a utilitarian point of view (they have no further use to anyone, they cost money to maintain, killing them prevents them from potentially harming others), it’s also easy to justify it from other moral points of view. I have no objection to a universal agreement that people who hack other people’s heads off on buses be killed.

Yes, I realize that I’ve wandered wildly off-track from where I began. If you’re one of my four regular readers, you’re probably used to that by now, though.

I continue to fail to understand why conservative politicians in Canada have failed to run on the crime issue. Almost everyone in this country agrees that our justice system is grotesquely lenient. The most recent poll I can find on the issue suggests that 44% of Canadians support the death penalty for people convicted of murder, with 52% opposing.

That, by itself, I should add is enough to form a majority if an election was held along those lines. But, I think, we need to look even deeper than that – given what we all know about polling. The question asked here was, “Do you favour or oppose the death penalty for people convicted of murder?”

Suppose if, instead, you asked the following question, “Do you favour or oppose the death penalty for those convicted of multiple murders, the murder of children, or particularly heinous murders where the guilt of the murderer has been established through either DNA evidence or the testimony of multiple witnesses?”  Frame the question that way and, I expect, you’d get a shift of at least ten points in support.

Remember, Harper doesn’t need to win a majority of votes to win a majority. Somewhere in the range of 40% is the magic number. Given that – and given the division of the other parties – the optimal strategy for Harper in an election isn’t to run on issues where there are relatively minor differences and people argue over which particular plan in the best. The best way for Harper to win a majority is to come up with a connected collection of issues where an interlocking 40% of Canadians feel basically the same way and to hammer away on those issues – thus throwing up a Berlin Wall between that part of the country and the powerless majority, who can squabble forever about how to divide up that 60% of the vote.

Posted by Adam T. Yoshida on August 3, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (53) | TrackBack

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Ric Dolphin Writes Again

Although loath to use another of those horrible words  concocted by the geeks  who, sadly, have inherited the world, there seems to be no avoiding it. I now have a "blog" which I shall endeavor to update at least every Monday and which you are invited to visit at, ricdolphin.com
Be aware that, unlike when I wrote for Western Standard magazine, I am not being  censored for language. I am also not specifically writing about politics, although the subject may be broached on occasion.  Be assured, however, that I shall never  use "blog" as  a verb.

Posted by Ric Dolphin on July 9, 2008 in Aboriginal Issues, American History, Books, Canadian Conservative Politics, Canadian History, Canadian Politics, Canadian Provincial Politics, Crime, Current Affairs, Film, Humour, International Affairs, International Politics, Media, Military, Municipal Politics, Religion, Science, Television, Trade, Travel, Web/Tech, Weblogs, Western Standard, WS Radio, WStv | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Friday, June 06, 2008

Disarm the gun hobbyists!

Imagine heavily armed Olympic athletes roaming Bay Street to hunt down innocent and helpless Torontonians in a sick game these monsters are calling “biathlon.”

Or imagine gangsters menacing our neighbourhoods and “kickin' it old school” with Civil War-era revolvers and muzzle-loading muskets.

This is the nightmare world from which Toronto Mayor David Miller wants to spare us.

The Western Standard has none other than Gerry Nicholls on this story. Read “Disarm the gun hobbyists!” here.

Posted by Matthew Johnston on June 6, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (56) | TrackBack

Friday, May 23, 2008

Mass detention of religious minorities in Iran - First Bahai's and now Christians

I've been busy dealing with the fundraising stuff recently but it doesn't mean that the important news should be ignored or set aside. Unfortunately, Tehran's Amir-Kabir University independent news website informs us (in Persian) that as many as 10 newly Christian converts have been detained in the southern Iranian city of Shiraz where a suspicious blast killed several people in a mosque. The Amir-Kabir Univ's website mentions that the Islamic regime of Iran is now trying to tie these ex-Muslims to that bombing and prosecute them. As you know the penalty for either of those two so-called crimes in Iran is death.

The Iranian regime's recent detention of Bahai's leadership also demonstrates the evil nature of this Islamofascist establishment that has hijacked and abused a once proud nation since 1979.

Posted by Winston on May 23, 2008 in Crime, Current Affairs, Religion | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Monday, May 12, 2008

Monkey business

Radio-news coverage of the memorial for a dead monkey named Jocko filled the B.C. airwaves on Sunday and even generated a front-page news story today in Vancouver, complete with a large photo of two distraught women.

Jocko was killed when, allegedly, thieves broke into his cage during a robbery which resulted in the supposed "kidnapping" of his mate, Mia.

But, hey, I'm thinking that if the media are going to treat this crime as if its victim was human, then they should go all the way. This means that they should not rule out as a suspect the one "person" who had motive (escaping an arranged marriage), the opportunity (at night, when no one was watching) and is now missing (on the lam, no doubt!).

Therefore, unless Mia steps forward to clear her name, she must be considered the prime suspect!

Posted by Terry O'Neill on May 12, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Thursday, March 06, 2008

I Opened the Paper

I opened the paper today, to read the Vancouver Province's series on drunk driving and was shocked to see a face I recognized looking back at me.

I went to Middle School with that girl.  What I remember of her is that she was religious - and that she got caught smoking during the "30 Hour Famine" (an event which I thought was ridiculous then, as I do now).

She was a nice girl.  As I recall, a bit of a goody-goody (save the aforementioned bit), but kindly.  I don't think I ever saw her again after that (I went to a different high school than most of the people I went to Middle School with).

Actually, it's particularly sad - as one of the first things which sprung to mind when I thought of her was that she seemed to be particularly close with her mother.

Sad, but also enraging:

The day after the crash, Aaron Forrest, 31, turned himself in to police. Court was to hear that after fleeing the wreckage, he swam the Nanaimo River to fulfill his quest to buy drugs. Forrest admitted that on the day of the accident, he was not in a sane state of mind, and had checked himself in to hospital the evening before after a two-day cocaine binge.

Oh, and I found this little bit which, for some reason, the Province didn't mention:

Before being charged with the deaths of the two women, Forrest had been convicted of dangerous driving, driving without insurance, possession of narcotics, assault, fraud, and other driving-related infractions.

First of all, the guy is thirty-one now.  That would make him twenty-nine at the time of the crash.  I count at least three indictable offenses on that list of crimes - it's insane that we let people like this roam the streets and kill people.

Indeed, they gave him just four years for driving down the road at one hundred and fifty kilometers an hour for forty-five minutes while high on drugs.

Actually, that's not exactly true - they gave him less because of, "the man’s relatively young age, guilty plea, supportive friends and family, and the fact that investigators had not proven drugs were a factor."

Yeah - you know why they didn't prove the drugs were a factor?  Because he fled the scene of the crime.

It's one of those things which can only make me mutter, "this stupid country..."

How much respect can we have for a government which lets criminals roam free and barely punishes them for killing two absolutely innocent people - and which uses its resources to harass Mark Steyn and Ezra Levant?

Posted by Adam T. Yoshida on March 6, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (22) | TrackBack

Monday, March 03, 2008

Home-grown terrorists

BREAKING NEWS: A banner left at the site of a well-planned arson attack, which has destroyed at least three homes on a Street of Dreams outside of Seattle this morning, indicates the Earth Liberation Front is behind the crime.

Readers may remember my Western Standard scoop of September 2006, when I revealed that attacks by the radical environmental group had caused at least $3 million damage in Ontario that year.

UPDATE:  KING-5 TV reports, "The Street of Dreams arson coincides with the trial of Briana Waters, an alleged Earth Liberation Front member accused of torching the UW horiticulture center in 2001."

Here's a link to an LA Times story on the arson attack, which is now estimated to have caused $7 million in damages.

Posted by Terry O'Neill on March 3, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Thursday, February 21, 2008

R. v. Yoshida: The Tale of the Parking Lot

I fought the Queen – and I won.  And, in some cases, perhaps you can win too.

A year and a half ago, I was cited for violating Section 144(1)(b) of the B.C. Motor Vehicle Act, which forbids “driving without reasonable consideration for other persons using the highway.”  In English – I was charged for driving clear across a mostly-empty parking lot on my way to work in the morning.  Frankly, I thought it was a stupid ticket.  It was a clear August day.  It was early in the morning.  The sun was out.  The section which I cut across was pretty much totally unoccupied.  I was travelling at, maybe, thirty.  The RCMP Constable claimed that she thought it was closer to forty.  I doubt it.  I also doubt that, in a span of two hundred or so meters, that the difference between thirty and forty can be reliably attained from simple visual observation.

Anyways, as I said, I was prepared to fight the case out on the merits.  I don’t think I did anything wrong – and I mean that in a legal sense, not merely in the sense that I admire Winston Churchill’s habit of driving on the sidewalks when necessary out of his conviction that he was far more important than ordinary people.  In particular, I think that I had solid ground for reasonable doubt both because I doubt if the cop would have been able to enumerate the supposed persons that I posed a danger to.  As well, it appeared to me that he Constable stopped me by following the exact same path across the parking lot as I did.  But, as it turned out, none of that was necessary.

Instead, I prevailed by relying on the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.  Yes, in general I’m not a fan of what that document hath wrought but, in this case, it saved me something like $500.

From when I got the ticket, on August 31st, 2006 (quota, anyone?) to the trial, close to eighteen months elapsed.  Therefore, I made an application for a stay of proceedings on the grounds that my right to be tried within a reasonable time, as contained in Section 11(b) of the Charter had been violated.

This wasn’t a shot in the dark.  In R. v. Askov the Supreme Court ruled that a delay of eight to ten months from charge to trial was appropriate and that, as delays extended beyond that point, they become increasingly hard to justify.  Further, they ruled that delays resulting from inadequate resources weigh against the Crown.  Since, in this case, the only factor (at least that I’m aware of) delaying this case was the lack of institutional resources, these facts tended to weigh in my favour.

However, a few years later, in R. V. Morin the Court raised the burden a little bit – holding that he accused, In order to prevail on an 11(b) motion must demonstrate some sort of prejudice arising out of the delay.  In this particular case, I felt that this definitely existed – since there were numerous witnesses to the incident at the time but, by the time a trial was scheduled more than a year later, I couldn’t find anyone with a confident enough recollection of the incident to testify in my defense.  Moreover, in a case where detailed facts would have mattered a great deal, any testimony that either the Constable or myself could have offered would have been, for the most part, to recap our own notes from the time of the incident.

Now, I wouldn’t encourage anyone to make frivolous motions.  But, I would suggest that the Crown has both a legal and moral obligation to dispose of matters in an orderly and rapid fashion.  It should not take a year and a half to deal with an ordinary traffic ticket.  If you have one that’s taking that long, I recommend copying my practice and seeking a stay of the charges on the grounds that the delay has violated your rights.  After all, it can’t hurt.

In order to properly make the application, I had to write it up and deliver it to the court, to the BC Attorney General, and to the Attorney General of Canada.  I’m told that people have done this by fax and ordinary mail but, not wanting to take any chances, I sent mine registered.  A few days later, I got a letter from the Department of Justice telling me that they wouldn’t be intervening in the case.

So, today, I went to court for the first time in my life.  Frankly, I was a little bit nervous – especially when I found that, while most the traffic cases where scheduled in one courtroom, I was set for another room whose docket was filled with longer-form items.  I became even more concerned when I saw that, rather than the RCMP Constable, there was a Crown lawyer to argue the case.

But, when I got up, the Crown Counsel told the Judge that because the combined time of arguing the application and following it with the trial would force the trial to be scheduled for some time even further into the future, the Crown was going to stay the charge.  Boom.  I won.

The lesson to be had – always stand up for your rights.  Don’t bow down before the state, especially when the state is wrong.  Perhaps if more people would fight their tickets on a consistent basis and do so using a sound and aggressive strategy, the tactic of using traffic policing as a method for revenue generation would stop working and instead police would be freed up to arrest actual criminals – like the drug gangs waging war upon eachother across the Lower Mainland.

Posted by Adam T. Yoshida on February 21, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (12) | TrackBack

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Resurrecting the death penalty?

Just when it seemed that the death-penalty debate in Canada was all but dead, Ipsos-Reid has conducted a poll on the subject, whose results have been summarized in this morning's Vancouver Sun. Here's a link to the full release on the two-week-old poll.

That such a poll was conducted in the first place is interesting. But even more interesting are the poll's results, which show that a solid majority of Albertans and British Columbians--and a slim majority of Ontarians--want the country to reinstutute capital punishment.

It's an issue that my old B.C. Report colleague, Robin Brunet, explored in this recent story, which used the conviction of serial killer Robert Pickton as a catalyst to explore the subject.

Posted by Terry O'Neill on February 14, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (25) | TrackBack

Saturday, January 05, 2008

A Deal?

 This should be 329 consecutive life sentences .


Posted by Neo Conservative on January 5, 2008 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Friday, December 28, 2007

Passport fee

On the sentencing of Emmanuel Villarceau which happened back on Nov. 20,  the Ottawa Citizen today: Passport fraud lands ex-public servant two-year prison term

"The court documents do not indicate how the people who obtained passports using falsified information came in contact with Mr. Villarceau, nor what Mr. Villarceau received for providing the passports."

Back on May 16, the CBC ran this piece; "Former government worker forged passports" which has these details;

"Villarceau, who worked as an examination officer at the passport office in Gatineau, Que., sold the fake passports between December 2003 and June 2004 to Canadians living overseas, RCMP Sgt. Monique Beauchamp said.

The buyers allegedly paid up to $10,000 for the bogus passport, which bore a false name."

The next day, May 17, the Citizen had this: Passport officer admits to document scam. It contains these soothing words from the RCMP;

"Sgt. Beauchamp said the RCMP has discovered no evidence that the passports have fallen into the hands of known terrorist groups or criminal organizations."

Okay, if the recent story is true and the court documents don't tell us "what Mr. Villarceau received for providing the passports", and the CBC story is true, that "buyers allegedly paid up to $10,000 for the bogus passport" then somehow that detail didn't wind up in the court documents. In stories I read, the other detail of how these people "came in contact with Mr. Villarceau" is missing. That is curious and I'm glad the recent Citizen story pointed out it's missing in the court documents. So who would, or could, blow $10,000 on a false passport? Why would they do that? How did 14 people willing to spend $10,000 on a passport manage to get in contact with this one guy in the main office of Passport Canada-Foreign Affairs and International Trade? (btw just to be clear, the Passport Office changed its name to Passport Canada in Feb. 2005, right around the time Villarceau got caught and was fired--March 2005--probably, you know, to confuse criminals.)

Posted by Kevin Steel on December 28, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (24) | TrackBack

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

British Couple Forced to Take in Criminal

This is government at it's finest.

In summary, a British  couple - both of whom have "learning disabilities" and are under the care of social workers - have been forced to take a criminal into their home upon the order of a court because, when he was given house arrest, he wrote down their address as his own (allegedly because he had the permission of the couple's sixteen year-old daughter to do so).  Neither they, nor the police, can get rid of him, because he's been confined to these people's house by the court.

As a side note, for a couple under state care, they seem to have a fairly nice TV.

Posted by Adam T. Yoshida on December 19, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Monday, December 17, 2007

The wages of crime

Judge St. Eve agrees to the David Radler plea bargain and sends Conrad Black's former partner to jail for 29 months.

Posted by Terry O'Neill on December 17, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Who says Canadian Cops...

Aren't willing to embrace multiculturalism?

Once there, Peel police Const. Andrew Cooper  --  a.k.a. Leon the Obeah Man, broke an egg that spilled blood to show off his powers.

Cooper pretended to be an Obeah Man -- a practitioner of witchcraft and voodoo in Caribbean culture -- to get Collette Robinson and her son Evol to reveal their knowledge of the Oct. 9, 2004 slaying of Youhan Oraha, 22.


Posted by Neo Conservative on December 11, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Monday, December 10, 2007

Black's redefining moment

Conrad Black's appearance in a Chicago court today, during which he expressed "profound regret and sadness" for the hardship endured by Hollinger International shareholders and, more importantly, heard he had been sentenced to 6 1/2 years in jail for misappropriating funds, reminded me of something from Tom Wolfe's novel, The Bonfire of the Vanities.

Towards the end of the novel, the main character, Sherman McCoy, a high-flying businessman who becomes entangled in the U.S. criminal-justice system, has an ephiphany: that he has to change the definition of himself, from that of superstar "Master of the Universe" trader, to one of, essentially, a full-time defendant.

The redefinition was, I believe, necessary for McCoy to preserve his sanity.

Posted by Terry O'Neill on December 10, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (19) | TrackBack

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Will Pickton Be Acquitted?

This latest development in the Robert Pickton trial is... somewhat concerning.

Here's the short version.  Today, the Jury sent a question to the judge asking, "Are we able to say 'yes', if we infer that the accused acted indirectly?"

To translate that into English, their question was whether they kind find Pickton guilty if they cannot say, beyond a reasonable doubt, that Pickton killed the women - but are certian that he played a role in their deaths.

In response to this, the Judge issued a modified instruction to the Jury:

"If you find that Mr. Pickton shot Ms. Wilson or was otherwise and active participant in her killing you should find that the Crown has proven this element.

"On the other hand, if you have a reasonable doubt about whether or not he was an active participant in her killing you must return a verdict of not guilty.

Frankly, while I believe that this instruction is correct, it still concerns me gravely - as this whole matter does.  I've predicted for a good while that Pickton would be acquitted.  Don't get me wrong - I don't think that he's innocent - but I think that there's been something gravely wrong with how this case has been handled from end to end.

I have more thoughts on this, but I'm going to reserve them for a little but later.

Posted by Adam T. Yoshida on December 6, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack

24 Hours star gets 48 days

Kiefer Sutherland: Taking it like a man.

Posted by Terry O'Neill on December 6, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (26) | TrackBack

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Truth About the Jena 6

For some time, I've being trying to explain to people the absurdity of the uproar about the "Jena 6" - six criminals who assaulted an entirely innocent man and then, somehow, managed to make themselves into victims.  But this article, from the Assistant Editor of the Jena Times lays out the case far better than I ever could.

Here is the most striking portion:

The event on Dec. 4, 2006 was consistently labeled a "schoolyard fight." But witnesses described something much more horrific. Several black students, including those now known as the Jena 6, barricaded an exit to the school's gym as they lay in wait for Justin Barker to exit. (It remains unclear why Mr. Barker was specifically targeted.)

When Barker tried to leave through another exit, court testimony indicates, he was hit from behind by Mychal Bell. Multiple witnesses confirmed that Barker was immediately knocked unconscious and lay on the floor defenseless as several other black students joined together to kick and stomp him, with most of the blows striking his head.

Let's review: this group of thugs ambushed an innocent individual and savagely beat him unconcious.  Yet they're the ones who are getting songs written about them and who are being held up as heroes of civil rights?  What brave martyrs they make!  Though, they're more likely to make Bull Connor than Martin Luther King proud.

Posted by Adam T. Yoshida on October 24, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (157) | TrackBack

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Random Jihad in Toronto?

The shocking story began at around 11:30am, when someone approached a 40-year-old man near Adelaide and Yonge Sts. "A male confronted him, came up behind him, grabbed him by the neck and stabbed him three times," relates Det. Sgt. Neil Corrigan.

CTV has more

Updated 1: Farid Maronisi was arrested for his alleged actions in downtown stabbings in city of Toronto.

And I think we might have a random act of Jihad here in Toronto if this is going to be true.

Posted by Winston on October 23, 2007 in Crime, Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (14) | TrackBack

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Coming soon to a country near you

"12 U.S. citizens [are murdered by] illegal aliens each day.

"...13 Americans ... [are] killed each day by uninsured drunk driving illegals."

Not to mention the odd Canadian, and his son.

Posted by Kathy Shaidle on October 3, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (22) | TrackBack

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Putting our own house in order

With my post below in mind, here we now have Investment Executive: One in 20 Canadians a victim of investment fraud: study.

"Also, over 90% of Canadians believe the impact of investment fraud is as serious as that of violent crimes, but most people think the criminal justice system as a whole does not treat investment fraud as seriously as other crimes."

Are we cultivating a culture of corruption here at home in the private and public sector?

The reason I threw in the public sector there is because I'm thinking back to this Sept 24 story, Ottawa Citizen: Man held in $2.7M government fraud. See also the Ottawa Sun version (italics mine);

"They allege Gagnon has used his position since 1996 to perpetrate the fraud.

"The government of Canada takes these allegations very seriously," said Public Works spokeswoman Lucie Brosseau.

"Our special investigations directorate uncovered some irregularities in July as part of our normal operations.""

So you conduct "normal operations", what, every 11 years? How normal is that? How serious do we take these things? Anyway, the Sun story does take a paragraph at the end to mention the huge DND fraud committed by Paul Champagne, Cholo Manso and Peter Mellon. You want to see distrust and cynicism towards the system? Check out this thread on the DND fraud in a Ottawa Business Journal forum, with some contributions by people who seem to know the main players. Example;

"There appears to be 2 rules of law now in progress. The Public servant who is sitting in jail with all his assets now in the hands of the RCMP for stealing 2.7 million dolars and Champange and Manso who stole 140 million and 25 million who have yet to spend 1 minute in prison and are as mention, sitting in his hot tube having a good laugh."

Posted by Kevin Steel on October 2, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (14) | TrackBack

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Wanted: Mario Ines Torres

In June of this year two ETA terrorists (Ivan Apaolaza Sancho and Victor Tejedor Bilbao) living illegally in Canada were arrested and apparently there is one more at large who is possibly still in the country - one Mario Ines Torres:

The photo taken at an organic herb farm in D’Arcy, B.C., shows three Spanish men and their wives relaxing in a garden on plastic lawn chairs, their coffee mugs perched on a round patio table.

It looks unexceptional, but it isn’t. When the RCMP found the snapshot during a recent raid in Vancouver, they identified the men as Ivan Apaolaza Sancho, Victor Tejedor Bilbao and Mario Ines Torres — all wanted terrorists.

What they were doing at the isolated Moon Farm, deep in the Coast Mountains, remains a mystery, but two have since been captured by the RCMP and Canada Border Services Agency, which say they are members of the terrorist organization ETA.

The third, Mr. Torres, remains on the loose. Canadian immigration has issued an arrest warrant. It describes him as a member of the International Revolutionary Action Group. All three men in the picture are alleged to have violent pasts.

Police files obtained by the National Post say Mr. Torres kidnapped a bank director, placed two car bombs in front of an Iberian airlines office in Belgium, was caught with weapons in France and has ties to ETA and several other leftist terror groups. […]

There is no evidence the Spaniards were planning attacks in Canada. Officials believe they were simply here for “R&R.” Despite being wanted on international warrants, the men spent years living freely in B.C. One drove a black SUV to work. Another took his parents on a vacation to the Rockies last year. […]

The RCMP’s Integrated National Security Enforcement Team in B.C. showed the photo they found to a “confidential source” who identified everyone in the shot.

The informant told police a woman in the foreground was Mr. Torres’ wife, Margaret Moon, the organic farmer who runs Moon Farm and sells her produce at the market in Whistler, B.C.

A Canadian immigration report says Mr. Torres was stopped at the Douglas border crossing in B.C. in April, 2005, as he was returning to Canada from a holiday in Mexico.

Interviewed by immigration officers, he said he had been living in D’Arcy and confirmed he had been a member of the International Revolutionary Action Group.

Asked if he had any involvement with ETA, he said: “No, I don’t like nationalists, particularly.”

The CBSA decided to deport Mr. Torres for terrorism. Instead of holding him in custody, he was instructed to come to a hearing before the IRB in Vancouver on Jan. 12, 2006.

He never showed up. Police are still looking for him. (National Post)

Divine Bed and Breakfast at the Moon Farm in D’Arcy, B.C. offered a Spanish in a Weekend Summer Retreat starring you know who:

Included in the package are 3 meals per day and accommodation, two per room and private rooms where available. We feature various dishes from Spain and Latin America. Saturday afternoon includes a cooking demonstration with Mario Ines-Torres from Barcelona, now a resident of the valley, followed by a sumptuous feast. Then we are entertained by Mario’s flamenco guitar around the bonfire. (#)

On the homepage:

Mario Ines-Torres. Mario is a resident of Devine, a gypsy born in Barcelona, Spain. He is a flamenco guitarist and singer of flamenco styles of music renown in North America. A great entertainer, he also tells the history and culture of the gypsy or Rom people. He’s been cooking “paella” and other typical spanish dishes since his boyhood in his grandmother’s kitchen.

Mario Ines-Torres was also featured in a May 2005 newsletter published by the University of Toronto which reviewed Romani Music Night at Kino Café in Vancouver:

Mario and Margaret now operate an organic farm located a three hours’ drive north of Vancouver, and come to the city occasionally when Mario performs with his new band Tato Pani (#)

Margaret is the Margaret Moon and Mario is a wanted terrorist/flamenco singer and guitarist.

So to sum this up, one Mario Ines-Torres who in 1974 was involved in kidnapping a bank director in Paris and involved in two car bombings has been playing in a flamenco band in Vancouver when not hiding out at his wife’s farm in D’Arcy, B.C..

As the National Post story above tells us he probably had no reason to hide.

In unbelievable parody Mario Ines-Torres was interviewed in a 1999 National Film Board of Canada documentary titled Opre Roma: Gypsies in Canada:


You can watch the clip here at the NFB’s Across Cultures


In today’s National Post (Sept 28):

A Spanish man described by Canadian immigration officials as a former left-wing terrorist lived for a decade in B.C. as “Lolo,” singer of a flamenco band called Los Canasteros.

Mario Ines Torres was being deported from Canada for terrorism last year when immigration officials in Vancouver lost track of him and issued a warrant for his arrest.

He has still not been found, but before he vanished he was a regular at a Vancouver tapas bar, where he sang and played guitar, and also performed at the Vancouver Folk Festival.

“When I sing, I am just a transport for the voice of my ancestors. I didn’t choose to sing, they chose me,” Lolo says on the band’s Internet page, which says the band is named after the “Gypsies of Southern Spain.”

“He’s actually a very nice fellow,” said Mark Bellini, manager of Kino Cafe, where Mr. Torres performed. […]

Despite his alleged past as a terrorist, Mr. Torres was well-known in flamenco music circles and was even featured in a National Film Board documentary about ethnic Roma in Canada.

c/p Dust my Broom

Posted by Darcey on September 27, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (9) | TrackBack

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Brother criminal, sister thug

Yes, I know there's no material evidence linking the sabotaging of Vancouver's parks to the city's striking CUPE workers. But, really, everyone has a pretty good idea that union goons are responsible, and even the union executive isn't exactly denying the connection.

And, oh yes, in case you missed it, that sabotage consisted of strewing soccer fields with broken glass and nails. How enlightened.

Earlier in the strike, CUPE workers stood accused of vandalizing cars, assaulting a pregnant woman, and terrorizing citizens who were attempting to dispose of their garbage at a private site.

Posted by Terry O'Neill on September 25, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Abandoned to death

Criminal charges of child abandonment have been laid in the case of a baby boy who was born in a Wal-Mart bathroom in Prince Albert and then left to die, face down in a toilet.

Child abandonment? Child abandonment is when you leave your swaddled baby on the doorstep of someone's house or inside a hospital waiting room. The Wal-Mart incident, on the other hand, seems more like an act of attempted infanticide.

Another sad day for the Canadian justice system.

Posted by Terry O'Neill on August 30, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (37) | TrackBack

Monday, August 20, 2007

Poverty equals violence?

There's something deeply disturbing about this particular story, which tells of a six-year-old aboriginal boy who was drowned by three other aboriginal youngsters at the Pauingassi reserve in Manitoba. And it's not just the tragic tale which is at the heart of the story.

The problem is evident in this paragraph: "We allow kids to grow up in extreme poverty," says Elsie Flett, head of the First Nations of Southern Manitoba Child and Family Services Authority. "Why are we then surprised when these kids become violent? Society has really been very violent towards them."

Not so fast, Ms. Flett. First, there's your disheartening and demeaning assumption that a life of poverty will automatically lead to a life of violence. This is determinist claptrap. Second, there's your assertion that "society" is inflicting violence on the children, presumably by keeping them impoverished.

This is such an ill-defined accusation that it's difficult to examine. Does she mean society as represented by the band structure? By the reserve system? By aboriginal society in general? Or, perhaps, by the outside world? Regardless of which entity she is blaming, she is stretching the definition of violence in the same way that Marxist class warriors, for example, do in asserting that capitalism inflicts violence on the working class.

So what is Flett's solution? More personal responsibility? Better parenting? Fewer one-parent families? Band-governance reform? An end to the welfare mentality that has so many reserves in its thrall? Tougher controls on drugs and alcohol? Nope, nope, nope, nope, nope, and nope. Flett's answer is, not surprisingly, to shirk personal responsibility and to look to Ottawa for all the answers:  "Who is interviewing Stephen Harper and his government?" Flett asked in an interview. "Who is saying, 'What are you doing about Pauingassi'?"

I say: Who is interviewing band leaders and asking them, "What are you doing about Pauingassi?"

Posted by Terry O'Neill on August 20, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (63) | TrackBack

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Now comes the paperwork

In the wake of the police shooting of a chain-wielding man in Vancouver on Monday night, we once again have the opportunity to size up the legal and bureaucratic institutions and procedures that exist in Canada to ensure that police misconduct does not take place.

As reported in today's National Post, five detectives are investigating the shooting and will prepare a report for Crown prosecutors; the VPD's own professional standards unit will investigate the shooting; the Office of the Police Complaints Commissioner has been notified; and the coroner's service is also probing the shooting.

The level of scrutiny to which is a police officer is subjected every time he fires his gun is certainly onerous and, in some respects, a reflection of the anti-police bias that became institutionalized when my utopian generation took power. Ultimately, though, I think it's a good thing to ensure that the police don't run amok -- especially in a country where it's virtually illegal for anyone except a policeman to carry a sidearm.

Posted by Terry O'Neill on August 15, 2007 in Crime | Permalink | Comments (41) | TrackBack