A purported RCMP “continuation report” document leaked to Alex Tsakumis reveals what appears to be a bribe offered by the chief officer of the BC Liberal Party to David Basi in order to secure action by the Finance Minster that will result in a large donation to the party.
Here is the key part of the conversation as apparently reported by the RCMP: Basi and BC Liberal Party Executive Reichart are discussing a prospective donation of $10,000 to the party.
Reichart: “Did you get that email?
Basi: “Got the email and forwarded it to the boss. Will talk to the boss once he’s finished his meeting.
Reichart: “It’d be nice to get it through. He might even get a tip out of it.”
Basi: “I would just donate it back to the party, senator.”
Here’s the relevant section of the Criminal Code.
121. (1) Every one commits an offence who
(a) directly or indirectly
(i) gives, offers or agrees to give or offer to an official or to any member of his family, or to any one for the benefit of an official, or
(ii) being an official, demands, accepts or offers or agrees to accept from any person for himself or another person,
a loan, reward, advantage or benefit of any kind as consideration for cooperation, assistance, exercise of influence or an act or omission in connection with
(iii) the transaction of business with or any matter of business relating to the government, or
(iv) a claim against Her Majesty or any benefit that Her Majesty is authorized or is entitled to bestow,
whether or not, in fact, the official is able to cooperate, render assistance, exercise influence or do or omit to do what is proposed, as the case may be;
In the RCMP iteration of the conversation, Reichart suggests a donation depends upon the Finance Minister doing something. If that happens “a tip” may be forthcoming from the donation. Basi clearly understands that this is a monetary incentive as he says he’ll “donate it back to the party.”
If this report is accurate, it describes a classic “pay for play” scheme – the meat and potatoes of political corruption the world over – ‘you get this done for me, you’ll get a piece of the action.’ And it fits the description of Section 121 of the Criminal Code.
But a possible offence is just one of the difficult issues this leaked report raises. Others go far beyond this particular deal.
There are questions regarding the role of the RCMP beginning with: did the RCMP investigate this incident? If not why not?
Kelly Reichart “happens to be” as the Vancouver Sun puts it, the brother-in-law of the lead RCMP investigator Insp. Kevin deBruyckere. Were decisions around this wiretap compromised by this relationship?
This leads to questions about the role of the Special Prosecutor.
Did the RCMP share this wiretap with the Special Prosecutor. If not, why not. If they did share it with the Special Prosecutor why did he not take action?
Then there are the questions about the deal that ended the trial. How that deal came about continues to be a mystery compounded by the various different explanations the former Attorney General has offered publicly.
What we do know is that the Former Finance Minister Gary Collins – known as “the Boss” on this transcript – was scheduled for examination and cross-examination when the deal was jointly offered by the Government and Special Prosecutor. It is not too far a step to suggest that the Defense would have likely taken the opportunity to ask Mr. Collins about this RCMP report.
So the question is, was this report a reason the Defense was made an offer it couldn’t refuse?
And one last question. Where’s the media?