The leak: what it means

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?




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11 Responses to The leak: what it means

  1. Paul says:

    I’ll take a crack at answering your question.

    The reporters are in a corner cowering lest wiretapped records of their conversations with David Basi are released, not because they’re implicated in any way but simply because their self promoted reputations as independent thinkers would be sorely damaged. The editors and managers are just doing their job of sitting on this story and protecting vested interests, happily generating a distraction through the daily concoction of the market tested titilation and sensationalism that passes for news and keeps the masses sated.

    I think you already knew that.

  2. Norm Farrell says:

    Two members of the press gallery who make a weekly Vancouver radio appearance have already admitted the certainty of being embarrassed if conversations with insiders came to light. Apparently this is an artful technique of accessing information from insiders. The difficulty though is who is using whom? The journalists believe they are the smart ones. Of course, the insiders are certain they are the smart ones.

  3. Linda says:

    The media, is known as a disgrace to their professions. I don’t take their word on anything they write or report, and nor do thousand of others. You know they are all biased, and, pro Campbell and his crime family. You know what they are going to do, before they say it or write it.

    There is no way they can distract the BC people from, Campbell’s corrupt sale of the BCR. The people want their BCR back, that Campbell thieved from us. We want Campbell in prison, where he belongs. The more the media kisses Campbell’s butt, the more angry the BC people are becoming. The media should can their crap, we see through all of them.

  4. Robbie says:

    Ian, you ask: where is the media? For the most part, the media are presently located extremely close to Ms Clark’s bottom line: acheive power at any and all costs, up to and including denying any involvement in BC Rail when clear evidence proves otherwise. Even seasoned columnists have penned off balance pieces, thus minimizing the other Lib candidates, which is quite sad, to essentially promote the interests of Ms Clark.
    The honour and integrity of the once proud and great profession of political investigative journalism appears to be in its death throes in BC, sold into the slavery of advertising interests over the quality of accurate and fair comment in reporting.
    In order to be part of the solution to the growing disinformation campaign of media corporatists supporting BC Libs, I have joined the NDP party to see that one of their candidates becomes our 36th premier. I also follow more and more politcal blogs such as yours for relevant and current information. Thank you for allowing me to comment.

  5. NA says:

    “And one last question. Where’s the media?”

    Rest assured, the media will get back to that hard hitting investigative journalism as soon as the NDP form government.

  6. charles parkhurst says:

    Media is covering the “Leadership” contest in an Orwellian fashion. Somewhat as if everything is fine. After reading the latest post by Laila Yuile, which is extremely disturbing- it very well could be that BC has had a very corrupt government in place for the past nine years or so.

  7. r says:

    see where media contributions to parties have gone in past and you might get a clearer picture

  8. Skookum1 says:

    The media questions have all been answered and then some by previous posters. What I’d like to know is “leaked by whom?” (or is that suppose to be “whom?” – my formal grammar is rusty).

    Point is this is about the same individual who disappeared, so the story has it, since about Wednesday of this last week and is nowhere to be found; nor are any photos of him known to exist online, as another column/blog has observed – I think it was Tieleman but apologies to whoever the right blog(ger) is who did make that comment, if not him, asking “Where is Kelly Reichert?” Though it’s only an internal party matter, it was under his helm that the organization of the ballot was made where so many – so many – PINs went missing – all to, it seems, certain northern and Interior postal codes. From Ottawa, by a private contractor – and we know what we think of private contractors and their partisan allegiances, don’t we? – and then there’s the matter of the campaigns having access to the PIN lists. Now, suddenly, there’s a further leak

    All this would be much more interesting if the people doing thet leaking would just do one big single disclosure onto WikiLeaks, and leave the gatekeeping and gamesmanship out of it. Otherwise it should be understood that the selective releasing of materials has its own motives, and conceivably of a manipulative nature. Or as in this case, a very very long knife. The political delicacy of the vote mechanism meant it had to be absolutely transparent and fair. And confounded the regional-weighted system’s whole point. Doesn’t matter if it was planned or not, whoever was responsible had to go; they may trot out some other reason, but that’s the real reason. And in politics when someone is gone, knives are thrown in their back to make sure they’re gone – no doubt, huh? – consider the Basi-Virk disclosures last week, all targeted and aimed for political effect, and again to try and discredit them.

    This isn’t to say it wasn’t all anything more than incidental and unrelated; but in politics, optics is everything, and there’s a lot of optics here. Smoke and fire etc. This throws a spotlight on de Bruckyere now, too, and not just on Reichert. One thing that got me with the disclosed material is the tone that indicates this kind of talk is business-as-usual, a whole system, not just one conversation within it, of political vice and exploitation, of piracy and illegal dealings within the public’s business as a matter of course. This isn’t about just these two guys, or this one conversation; this is about the way things were within the corridors of Liberal power.

    The punchline is where he calls Reichert “senator”, indicating yet another payback, by someone, in return for his services to the Cause, not just negotiating over one “donation”. Presumably that someone is part of the federal Liberal machine in a situation to “make it so”, create a senator; whether that’s a backroom person or a prime ministerial aspirant, or even the party’s prime minister-in-waiting himself.

    There’s a lot of stories to be told, from others as well, who might be encouraged to do some talking and leaking of their own – whether to a blogger, trickling out details, or just in one big dump into WikiLeaks. Where’s the real Anonymous when we need him/her/them? Actually they’re probably not that hard to find, but finding enough people with a conscience – and moral courage – in BC’s political establishment apparently isn’t so easy, even if they don’t approve of what’s been going on.

    That it’s not a full dump, but only carefully-chosen strategically-targeted documents coming out – or seems to be – says there’s something fishy yet about these leaks; not that they’re not true, but as to who’s releasing them and why.

    Call me a conspiracy theorist if you must, but there are bigger things afoot within these leaks than meets the eye. And probably really big feet. Somebody has a filing cabinet somewhere I wish they’d just release it all at once. Why drag out the fun? Let’s get on with it – we have a railway we want back.

    And if the Liberals want to burn their own house down, as they seem about to do, more power to them. Let a hundred flowers blossom, as Mao said. A good healthy shattering of “the Coalition” will shake things up, but also will provide an interesting political bloodbath as the party unravels itself over the next few months, or sooner.

    There is a strong echo of the ’41-’52 reign of the Liberal-Conservative Coalition, which ended in similar discord and, with an elimination ballot, spawned a fourth party and rocketed WAC to power and prominence. But there are none like him in either party today, and none on the horizon in the new parties; last in memory was, ironically, Gordon Wilson. But there’s no elimination ballot provincially anymore – WAC did away with it unilaterally, even though it had been passed by referendum and got him into power. But it’s not a new party that’s really needed, nor a new populist capable of mastering and being mastered within the current political and party system – it’s a whole new political system that’s needed, and a rethinking of what a party is. Happy talk I know, nice ideas, it’d be a long road. But we’re already on a long road because of this case and what it has revealed. But so far it’s still a tunnel, we can’t really see anything but a vast trail of breadcrumbs; and a court case already tightly controlled and manipulated suddenly shut down to keep too much from being revealed. Too late now, these trickles will become a flood and more heads than Reichert’s are gonna have to roll. Clark as her work cut out with her, and despite her team’s mastery of media manipulation and spin and “twistiness” – what do you expect of a pack of communications people, consutants/lobbyists and lawyers. The media have no power anymore to “make things go away”, nor even does – as it turns out – the court. Shutting it down has’nt stopped the flow of incriminating or just immoral evidence (like what Kenning’s cross-examination displayed about who BC Rail was turned to failure in order to sell it off…) but it may make a lot of it much more bitter and, well, interesting.

    And the flow of information doesn’t originate with the news media anymore, it originates with the sources, which is a whole new ball game and is helping make traditional media both obsolete and distrusted (and with good reason).

    I’m sure Kelly Reichert may have his own story to tell. Too bad it wasn’t on the stand……but even then we’ve seen before in the pre-trial hearings that events and doings which are seriously contrary to the law were never ordered investigated or charged, some of them very serious; as is this, in no small way.

    Sorry to ramble on, I know I’m new here, but since the situation with the media here is obvious enough, the bigger question to me that the leak poses is – why was this released right now? And by who (or whom)?

    Just an afterthought, re “where is Kelly Reichert?” – It would be interesting to know how many Liberal Party insiders own property in Maui, and Palm Springs. Not that he’s there, but his relative invisibility to the public eye means that he can’t be “spotted” – not that we have political paparazzi here. No money in it. The money’s all in the hands of those who need spotting.

    Anyone here know anything about how Christy and Kelly are connected? This could get real interesting in the next few days/weeks…..

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