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Canada’s ‘Three Monkeys’ Attorney General’s Office on Bush’s War Crimes: “Not appropriate” to pursue confessed Torturer. “See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil.” Lawyer TALKS BACK!


Canada Lets ‘W’ Escape Justice when we had the PERFECT chance to ARREST BUSH!

(Here’s how the “1%” get away with Murder)

Dateline: Surrey, BC, Canada. October 24, 2011.

After successfully lodging a private torture prosecution with the British Columbia Provincial Court in the City of Surrey against former U.S. president George W. Bush as he visited Surrey for a paid speaking engagement, four torture victims  had their pursuit of justice blocked by then Attorney General of B.C., Shirley Bond.

Click: the case details.

The four men, Hassan bin Attash, Sami el-Hajj, Muhammed Khan Tumani and Murat Kurnaz, each endured years of inhumane treatment including beatings, chaining to cell walls, being hung from walls or ceilings while handcuffed, lack of access to toilets, sleep, food and water-deprivation, exposure to extreme temperatures, sensory overload and deprivation, and other horrific and illegal treatment while in U.S. custody at military bases in Afghanistan and/or at the detention facility at Guantánamo Bay.  While three of the men have since been released without ever facing charges, Hassan Bin Attash still remains in detention at Guantánamo Bay, though he too has not been formally charged with any wrongdoing.

One man currently detained at Guantánamo  has been imprisoned there without charge for more than nine years.

Matt Eisenbrandt, legal director of the Canadian Centre for International Justice (CCIJ), who submitted the case on behalf of the torture victims remarked: “Mere hours after a justice of the peace received the criminal information and the court set a hearing date for January, we received notice by phone that the Attorney General of Briti sh Columbia had already intervened in the case and stayed the proceedings against former President Bush, effectively ending the case…[and he stressed that: "the legal basis for the case is exceptionally strong under the Criminal Code of Canada."

Eisenbrandt, of CCIJ: "A slap in the face to men tortured by Mr. Bush’s government"

This is a slap in the face to the four men who were brutally tortured by Mr. Bush’s government who have a right to have a court of law examine the evidence and hear the legal arguments,wrote Eisenbrandt.

_____________________________________________

This blogger wrote to the office of the Attorney General for British Columbia, Hon. Shirley Bond, requesting an explanation for the shocking summary dismissal of the 69+ page criminal indictment against Bush for war crimes (torture) presented to her office by the CCIJ. My request was stonewalled for several weeks. In the interim this blogger filed a Freedom of Information Request in search of  possible dark politics at play protecting Bush from Justice in Canada.  After a three week delay, Bond's Assistant Deputy Attorney General, Robert W. G. Gillen,  replied by email to my inquiry. The high irony did not escape this blogger that, while a serious criminal indictment presented to the court was dispensed with in a mere matter of hours in October, three weeks was the AG's fastest turnaround time to respond to a citizen's inquiry on the same matter!

Robert W.G. Gillen. ass’t deputy attorney general for B.C.: “It was not appropriate to prolong the matter.”

The Assistant Deputy AG ‘s reply hardly comprised a reasonable explanation of why the Province of British Columbia was disinterested, when presented with a perfect opportunity to fulfill Canada’s sworn duties under the Convention Against Torture and the Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes Act. The former is an international law, the latter a Canadian statute with application only in Canada. Both laws set out similar sanctions to detain and investigate a person suspected to be guilty of, among other things, torture, war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity. Bush, himself, admits in his own recent memoirs that he OK’d torture from the Oval Office and thoroughly approves of torture. That admission alone surely must comprise “appropriate” grounds to engage the machinery of criminal justice against a suspected offender! Still, “Not appropriate,” says Gillen. It appears the Office of the Attorney General for B.C. is populated by the three monkeys,right-quoteSee No Evil, Hear No Evil, and Speak No Evil!leftquote

“Not apprpriate” to arrest a self-confessed torturer in B.C.

_____________________________________________

LET’S TALK TORTURE, Mr. Assist!ant Deputy Attorney General:

Assistant Deputy Attorney General Contact Info

Robert W.G. Gillen

Assistant Deputy Attorney General
Criminal Justice Branch, Ministry of Attorney General

Telephone: 250 387-3840 Email: Not Available
Facsimile: 250 387-0090 URL: http://www.ag.gov.bc.ca/prosecution-service/
Mailing Address: PO BOX 9276

STN PROV GOVT

Victoria BC

V8W9J7

CANADA

Click: Homepage.

_____________________________________________

Assistant Deputy Attorney General Gillen’s letter to me: better late than never, at least !

Mr. Gillen wrote:

Dear _____:

I am responding on behalf of the Attorney General to your email of October 26, 2011.  As Assistant Deputy Attorney General, I am responsible for the Criminal Justice Branch within the Ministry of Attorney General, including the conduct and supervision of criminal prosecutions in British Columbia.

In your email you express concerns about the staying of charges against former United States president George Bush, charges which were laid in a private prosecution filed by the Canadian Centre for International Justice.

In British Columbia the Criminal Justice Branch is given the authority to conduct prosecutions.  It is the policy of the Branch to assume the conduct of all privately initiated prosecutions.  The case is brought to court when the charge assessment standard of the Branch is met.  This standard requires both a substantial likelihood of conviction and that a prosecution is in the public interest. If the charges do not meet these standards, the case is terminated.

This policy is in place to ensure an equal application of justice throughout the province.  That is, the same standard is used against all accused persons in all prosecutions.  The policy also recognizes that both apparent and actual impartiality and objectivity with respect to every prosecution require that prosecutions be conducted by an independent prosecutor rather than on behalf of an interested party.

Under the provisions of the Criminal Code, the consent of the Attorney General of Canada is required to continue a proceeding of the nature of that which was privately commenced against Mr. Bush, and which involved allegations against an individual who is not a Canadian citizen in relation to events which took place outside of this country.

Section 7(7) of the Criminal Code states: “No proceedings …shall be continued unless the consent of the Attorney General of Canada is obtained not later than eight days after the proceedings are commenced.”

The parties seeking to bring the proceeding against Mr. Bush had not obtained the consent of the Attorney General of Canada and there was no realistic prospect that such a consent would be obtained.   In the circumstances the Criminal Justice Branch concluded that there was no realistic prospect of that consent being provided in future and it was not appropriate to prolong the matter further.

Decisions to prosecute, stay proceedings or launch an appeal are made solely in accordance with legal criteria in a manner that, generally speaking, is independent of government.

You ask about written records related to this matter.  The provision of access to court records in accordance with established policies is the responsibility of court registries.  You may wish to contact the Surrey Provincial Court registry in this regard.

Thank you for writing about your concerns.

Yours truly,

Robert W. G. Gillen, Q.C.

Assistant Deputy Attorney General

Criminal Justice Branch

          _____________________________________________

Matt Eisenbrandt,  of the CCIJ was kind enough to critique Gillen’s reply. Click: read Eisenbrandt’s “123 People” profile.

                                                      “What happened here? Who covered whose ass?

Lets slice and dice British Columbia’s  Top Reasons Why George W. Bush is Above The Law:

Matt Eisenbrandt critiques Mr. Gillen’s defence of  confessed war criminal George W. Bush:

Mr. Gillen says:  “Three different standards [must be met ] for the continuation of a private prosecution.

Mr. Gillen says:The case is brought to court when the charge assessment standard of the Branch is met.  This standard requires both a substantial likelihood of conviction and that a prosecution is in the public interest.”

CCIJ REPLIES: We (CCIJ)  received no information that the Attorney General analyzed either of these factors in deciding to terminate our case, and Mr. Gillen provides no evidence that the factors could not be met.  (THE CCIJ) presented extensive evidence, including admissions by Mr. Bush himself, showing his involvement in torture.  This does not guarantee conviction but it is a very sound case both factually and legally.

United Nations ‘Convention Against Torture’ – Canada and U.S. both signatories.

CCIJ REPLIES: As for the public interest, the Government of Canada has committed itself, in domestic and international law, to the prevention and punishment of torture.  The Criminal Code explicitly permits prosecution in Canadian courts for torture committed abroad.  This provision was implemented when Canada ratified the Convention against Torture, which obligates parties to investigate any suspected torturer in their territory and submit a case for prosecution if the suspect is not extradited for prosecution abroad.  Canada has repeatedly condemned other countries for torture and done so because the government clearly believes such a stance is in the public interest.

CCIJ REPLIESThe proper option available to the Attorney General’s office was to wait the 8 days and then, if consent was not obtained, intervene in the case.

yellow-pushbuttonMORE CCIJ Mr. Gillen says the parties seeking to bring the proceeding against Mr. Bush had not obtained the consent of the Attorney General of Canada and there was no realistic prospect that such a consent would be obtained.   In the circumstances the Criminal Justice Branch concluded that there was no realistic prospect of that consent being provided in future and it was not appropriate to prolong the matter further.”  While Mr. Gillen is correct that section 7(7) of the Criminal Code requires the consent of the Attorney General of Canada, that provision says that consent must be obtained within 8 daysOur case was stayed only hours after the Justice of the Peace received the criminal information.  Though the BC Attorney General’s office may have believed that we had no realistic prospect of obtaining consent, we were not given the chance to do so in accordance with the Criminal Code.

redpushbutton CCIJ REPLIES no evidence was provided to support the AG’s assertion that we could not have obtained consent.  I would like to know what evidence the Attorney General has to support that notion and what conversations she or others had with the federal government.  The Vancouver Observer reported that the BC Attorney General’s office did not even consult with the Attorney General of Canada before intervening and staying the case.

Finally, Mr. Gillen says:  “Decisions to prosecute, stay proceedings or launch an appeal are made solely in accordance with legal criteria in a manner that, generally speaking, is independent of government.”  This is certainly the standard that should be followed.  To say that the decision was done independent of government does not seem entirely correct.  The Deputy Regional Crown Counsel who stayed the case did so at the direction and under the authority of the Attorney General of BC.  The Attorney General’s office (or the Criminal Justice Branch operating independently) could not possibly have reviewed the substantial evidence in our case before intervening and staying the prosecution.  As a result, the only evidence we have that “legal criteria” were followed is that the Attorney General relied on section 7(7) of the Criminal Code.

CCIJ REPLIESHowever, the BC Attorney General’s immediate intervention denied us the opportunity to obtain the necessary consent from the Attorney General of Canada within the time permitted under the Criminal Code.
green-pushbuttonCCIJ REPLIESI would also like the Attorney General of Canada to state why he did not initiate a prosecution or provide his consent for our private prosecution to continue.

_____________________________________________

This blogger writes: Could it be any more clear that corruption and sycophancy are at work in dark corners of the government(s) of Canada (and likely in other countries too) to save the  hide of the disgraced Mr. Bush from the criminal prosecution he so richly deserves for his self-confessed war crimes?

“We do not torture.” November 7, 2005. “Bush describes waterboarding as ‘highly effective’ ” Quoted in The Guardian, Nov. 9, 2010

It’s an outrage that the Attorney General of British Columbia obstructed the due process of  justice in October, blatantly waving away the indictment brought by the CCIJ against Bush in mere hours – a time frame that, as Matt Eisenbrandt points out, could not possibly have offered sufficient opportunity for the AG and her minions to read, research and fully consider the full 69+ pages of evidence, plus some 4,000 extra background pages made available for the asking. Bond may have given the indictment a cursory reading, or perhaps no reading at all, judging from the outcome.

Furthermore, in her haste to be done with the Bush file, the AG absolutely offended the CCIJ’s right to have up to eight days to convince the federal AG of the merits of the case. Eisenbrandt offers strong evidence suggesting that the AG for British Columbia didn’t bother to consult the federal AG before deep-sixing the Bush file. Dark politics are at work here.

And CAN WE TALK? Gillen: “[ Prosecution] requires both a substantial likelihood of conviction and that a prosecution is in the public interest.” What? How much more evidence does the AG NEED? Everybody in and around the Bush administration, and the cretinous creep HIMSELF says that he sponsored torture! And, Robo, wouldn’t slapping down the creeping fascist practice of  TORTURE be very, very much in the PUBLIC INTEREST!!???

Bush describes waterboarding as “highly effective” – The Guardian, Nov, 2010

Good gawd.

Further light may soon be brought to bear upon this little corner of darkness, via my pending Freedom of Information request. Still, Marlane MorenoInformation Access and Privacy Analyst, Criminal Justice Branch Headquarters advises me that the FOI department will respond to only one of my three queries! (The least revealing of my questions). It’s a  truism that information held by governments in these days of  Homeland Security, Dixie-style - even in the most free democracies such as our Canadian version –  is never really “free” anymore. The very act of this blogger requesting a peek through the AG’s credenza has doubtless sent more data flowing freely  TO government about me than will be merrily flowing  FROM government to me about the AG. That’s the chance we take, thanks to the very man we are so desirous to syncretise, the ‘Decider Hiz-Self,’  the ne’er-do-well former frat boy, George W. Bush! It’s a risk I’m willing to take. I will have the Truth.

George Bush’s luck will run out one day. And that will be a Good Day.

_____________________________________________

“More and more in our times Canadians have wondered  just what kind of continental neighbour America, is, exactly.  Where will it all end?”

That’s what this blog is all about.


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