Prime Time Crime

Fired Mountie takes corruption fight to Federal Court

A Mountie who was fired by the RCMP and later vindicated by the RCMP External Review Committee is taking his fight to the Federal Court. 

Corporal Robert Read was investigating government corruption involving what was then the Canadian High Commission in Hong Kong.   In the course of his investigation he believed he’d uncovered evidence of the corruption and what appeared to him to be a massive cover-up of that evidence.

Read’s investigation involved very rich and powerful members of the business community in Hong Kong, political connections in the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the government of then-Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, himself now the subject of other corruption allegations and being investigated in the Gomery Inquiry taking place in Ottawa and Montreal.

Read also found and highlighted an earlier report that raised concerns about misuse of the embassy’s immigration computer system called CAIPS.

Read tried to raise the alarm within the Force, but was stonewalled at every turn. He even tried to raise the issue within the Justice Department but his voice of concern fell on deaf ears. He then became a whistle-blower and met with the same fate as others before him. He was fired by the RCMP for what was called “disgraceful conduct.”

Later an RCMP External Review Committee vindicated Read saying Asian organized crime figures may have entered Canada because the RCMP failed to properly investigate allegations of widespread corruption at the Canadian high commission in Hong Kong. The committee said the national police force seriously mishandled its investigations into complaints that Asian triads had infiltrated the embassy.

According to the Committee’s findings, the RCMP was reluctant to investigate the activities of embassy employees suspected of taking bribes partly because it did not want to damage its relationship with the Department of Foreign Affairs.

In its ruling, the Committee said the Corporal Read was justified in taking his concerns to the media and ordered him reinstated. The RCMP has refused.

On April 18th in Ottawa, the Federal Court will hear Corporal Read’s appeal of the RCMP decision

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Prime Time Crime  April 10, 2005

Robert A. Read v. Attorney General of Canada

Date:      Monday & Tuesday, April 18 –19, 2005

Time:      9:30 a.m. 

Venue:    Federal Court, Ottawa

The Court will likely not set the actual hearing room until a few days before, but media can call the Registry at 613- 992-4238

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