Law Enforcement

B.C. targets unexplained wealth

The B.C. government is planning to widen the scope of its money-laundering legislation to crack down on organized crime assets by compelling people to explain how they acquired assets. Solicitor General Mike Farnworth said March 30 that it will, among other things, facilitate finding criminal assets hidden with family members but the B.C. Civil Liberties Association says B.C. “are going to have to go to court to prove that they are not criminals, and that's just unconstitutional.” [node:read-more:link]

Arrest in “swatting” calls case

A 20-year-old Washington state resident faces 10 felony charges in connection with “swatting” calls in several states as well as in Alberta. His alleged voice-over-internet calls prompted real and potentially deadly police emergency responses to bogus reports of bombs, shootings and other threats. [node:read-more:link]

PM contemplates RCMP overhaul

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s initial response to the March 30 report from an inquiry into the mass shooting of 22 persons in nova Scotia three years is that the government wants to “properly digest and understand” a recommended overhaul of the RCMP. “There's no question there need to be changes, and there will be, but we will take the time to get those right.” [node:read-more:link]

RCMP slammed in shooting inquiry

A commission of inquiry into the killing of 22 Nova Scotians three years ago said today that the RCMP failed on several fronts in how it handled Canada’s worst mass shooting. In its more than 3,000-pge report, the commission said the RCMP had ignored “red flags” long before the shooting, dismissed witnesses’ evidence and failed to warn the public. Among other things, it suggests the RCMP replace its 26-week training regimen with a three-year degree program. [node:read-more:link]

Montrealer faces terrorist allegations

Mohamed Amine Assal, 18, of Montreal has been arrested by the RCMP acting on information from the FBI and was expected to have a video court appearance today. No charges have been laid and the RCMP say the operation was designed to have Assal sign a peace bond because there were “reasonable grounds to fear that Mr. Assal may commit a terrorism offence.” [node:read-more:link]

French pension riots continue

Police fired tear gas at violent black-clad anarchists in Paris today as hundreds of thousands of otherwise mainly peaceful protesters marched across France against President Emmanuel Macron’s plan to raise the national pension age to 64 from 62 this year. In a ninth day of nationwide protests, train and air travel was disrupted while professionals walked off the job. [node:read-more:link]

China accuses Canada of “smear”

Confirmation that the RCMP are investigating two Chinese “covert police stations” in Quebec has prompted China’s foreign ministry to say that Canada should “stop sensationalizing and hyping the matter and stop attacks and smears.” The stations ostensibly are supposed to be helping expatriates with paperwork, among other things, but there have been allegations of intimidation and harassment the RCMP say “won’t be tolerated.” [node:read-more:link]

Bail reform plan well received?

Federal Justice Minister David Lametti’s stated commitment to “targeted” Criminal Code and bail reforms should rebalance what some of his provincial counterparts agreed were “unintended consequences” of 2019 reforms. “We have a broad consensus on a path forward, one based on a set of shared principles and clear objectives,” says Lametti. “That starts with a commitment from […] the federal government to move forward quickly.” [node:read-more:link]

Supreme Court judge defends himself

Supreme Court of Canada Justice Russell Brown, on leave since February 1, says he did nothing to provoke an altercation in Arizona three days earlier which triggered a complaint to the Canadian Judicial Council. Police say a complainant, who at one point was on the verge of being arrested, had accused Brown of being intoxicated and had touched a female companion “inappropriately.” [node:read-more:link]

Bodycams mandated for Alberta police

In what it says is an effort to increase public trust, Alberta plans to mandate vest-mounted cameras for police. Public Safety & Emergency Services Minister Mike Ellis says that “by documenting the behaviour of the police in public, collecting better evidence, and improving our approach to resolving complex complaints during investigations”, cameras are “an objective measure to show what occurs.” [node:read-more:link]

Edmonton police officers shot

Two Edmonton Police Service officers were killed today when responding to a domestic violence call. A male suspect is reported to have committed suicide and a related female is listed in stable condition but with life-threatening injuries. [node:read-more:link]

Flipping the bird “God-given” right

Acquitting a Montrealer of criminal harassment and threatening a neighbour, a Quebec judge, said it is “not a crime to give someone the finger” and also called the case a bewildering injustice. “Flipping the proverbial bird is a God-given, Charter-enshrined right that belongs to every red-blooded Canadian,” Justice Dennis Galiatsatos ruled. “It may not be civil, it may not be polite, it may not be gentlemanly. Nevertheless, it does not trigger criminal liability.” [node:read-more:link]

Scientists’ dismissal still a puzzle

Nearly four years after two Chinese scientists were fired from a federal laboratory in Winnipeg on alleged national security grounds, the RCMP investigation continues. “Investigations are often complex, multijurisdictional and resource-intensive,” an RCMP spokeswoman offered without further comment. The two scientists have since returned home. [node:read-more:link]

Security chief tries to reassure voters

National Security and Intelligence Advisor Jody Thomas told a parliamentary committee March 1 that while concerns about Chinese interference in Canada’s electoral processes are understandable, “the last two federal elections were fair and legitimate.” Amidst calls for a public inquiry, she also said the government is taking “concrete steps” to address the concerns. [node:read-more:link]

Explosive device detonated in B.C.

An RCMP bomb disposal unit from Vancouver detonated an explosive device late February 27 about seven hours after it was found beside a highway in the south-central city of Kelowna. Investigators now are trying to determine who planted it and why. [node:read-more:link]


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