Law Enforcement

Australian health insurer extorted

The Australian Federal Police suspects “loosely-affiliated” Russian hackers of trying to extort a major medical insurance company. “We believe that those responsible for the breach are in Russia,” Commissioner Reece Kershaw said today. Meanwhile, the AFP was ““undertaking covert measures and working around the clock with our domestic agencies and our international networks.” [node:read-more:link]

Extradition in major ransomware case

Mikhail Vasiliev, a 33-year-old Russian-Canadian faces extradition to stand trial in the U.S. for alleged involvement in the LockBit ransomware group. In a criminal complaint unsealed in New Jersey, the Justice Department says that Vasiliev, in custody after his November 9 arrest in Ontario, was involved in “one of the most active and destructive ransomware variants in the world” in that it collected millions of dollars from victims. [node:read-more:link]

Time to wake up and smell the coffee

Draft federal legislation which would dissolve the RCMP’s civilian complaints review body and create a replacement which also would deal with Canada Border Services Agency should involve indigenous personnel. A potential amendment to Bill C-20, broached in the House of Commons by the New Democratic Party’s public safety critic, has drawn the support of the president of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs. “It's absolutely essential that any oversight bodies of policing agencies include an indigenous presence,” says Grand Chief Stewart Phillip. [node:read-more:link]

PM’s former bodyguard denies leaks

A former member of the RCMP and Prime Minister’s personal protection unit says he did not leak the PM’s schedule ahead of last winter’s “Freedom Convoy” gridlock in Ottawa. The allegation was in a redacted Ontario Provincial Police report to the inquiry into the use of the Emergencies Act but Daniel Bulford, who resigned from the RCMP last December because he disagreed with the government’s vaccination mandate, adamantly rejected the suggestion. [node:read-more:link]

Ottawa police said to support protestors

The Ottawa Police Service is investigating allegations that some officers leaked intelligence to organizers of last winter’s “Freedom Convoy” which gridlocked the city’s downtown for weeks. The investigation follows testimony before the inquiry into the government’s use of the Emergencies Act by a lawyer representing some protest organizers. [node:read-more:link]

Former PM bodyguard investigated

An investigation is under way into reports that a former member of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's security team may have leaked the PM’s schedule, The issue came to light November 3 during the inquiry into the government’s use of the Emergency Act to end the “Freedom Convoy” protest in Ottawa last winter. A redacted intelligence document suggested that the officer, who resigned from the RCMP in 2021, believed that the government’s mandatory coronavirus vaccinations were unconstitutional. [node:read-more:link]

Chinese “police stations” investigated

The RCMP is investigating Chinese “police stations” in Canada after a human rights group reported that three in the Greater Toronto Area were among more than 50 worldwide supposed set up to help expatriates with issues in Canada but which also have convinced some to repatriate. “It's completely illegal under international law,” a Safeguard Defenders official said. “It's a severe violation of territorial sovereignty.” [node:read-more:link]

ISIS adherents arrested in Canada

One of two Canadian women repatriated from a Syrian detention camp for families of Islamic State was charged with terrorism-related offences shortly after arriving earlier this week in Montreal. RCMP said Oumaima Chouay, 27, had been the focus of an international investigation into terrorist activities. A lawyer representing the second woman, Kimberly Polman, 50, said authorities are seeking a peace bond for her. [node:read-more:link]

Social media exacerbated convoy fears

Social media posts ahead of last February’s “freedom convoy” which paralyzed the capital for a month were a major concern for the Ottawa Police service, Inspector Russell Lucas has told the commission of inquiry into the federal government’s invocation of the Emergencies Act. The fact that some posts mentioned to the January attack on Capitol hill in Washington prompted fears that the Ottawa protest could be a platform for “anti-government elements.” [node:read-more:link]

Another black eye for policing

Alberta’s Serious Incident Response Team is investigating the RCMP’s handling of an autistic teenager in the Edmonton satellite community of St. Albert. The 16-year-old was in playing in a park behind his grandparents’ house when officers responded to a complaint. Even though the RCMP had been advised of the teen’s condition, they took him into custody before moving him to hospital from a holding cell. RCMP have also launched an internal investigation. [node:read-more:link]

Minority government safe for now

The New Democratic Party is reserving judgment on the propriety of the Liberal minority government’s invocation of the Emergencies Act earlier this year. Leader Jagmeet Singh said October 23 that the NDP will await the findings of a commission of inquiry into the government’s decision but “simply because it was the wrong decision wouldn’t be enough for us . . . to force the country into an election” by withdrawing its support in Parliament. [node:read-more:link]

RCMP Commissioner dresses down subordinates

It has been confirmed that RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki reprimanded personnel in Nova Scotia for their communications after last April’s mass shootings in the province. Lucki has said she was not directed by the government to disclose details of the weapons involved but did express frustration with her officers who suspected political interference. [node:read-more:link]

Police dysfunction over “freedom convoy”

An Ontario Provincial Police operations commander has testified at the hearing into the federal government’s invocation of the Emergencies Act in response to the “freedom convoy” in Ottawa last February that dysfunction within the Ottawa Police Service. “We couldn't read their minds as to what their plan was because there was no plan,” Superintendent Craig Adams said. [node:read-more:link]

RCMP officer stabbed to death

A 37-year-old man has been charged with first-degree murder in the October 18 stabbing death of an RCMP officer in Burnaby, B.C. Constable Shaelyn Yang, a member of the force’s mental health and homeless outreach team, was stabbed by a man while helping a city employee to ask the man to remove his tent from a park. [node:read-more:link]

“Freedom” demos challenged governments

Less than a week into hearings examining the federal government's invocation of the Emergencies Act in response to the “Freedom Convoy” in Ottawa and jammed border crossings, hundreds of documents have been made public. They shed some light on, among other things, the discussions between various levels of government and warnings about potential security threats. [node:read-more:link]


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