Tuesday, June 14, 2005

FAQ 9b. Did Grewal break s. 119 of the criminal code? (KN)

(KN continues his guest FAQ -- again, this is for general information only and should not be construed as a legal opinion)

For section 119, see here. If Grewal has broken this law, it would be under 119(1)(a). That part is made up of the following elements:
1) �Every one who (a) being...a member of Parliament�
2) corruptly�(iii) attempts to obtain...
3) office...for himself or another person
4) in respect of anything� to be done or omitted by him in his official capacity�
The real question in court would be whether Grewal is guilty of number 2. In a similar case on theft [R. v. Dalzell (1983), 6 CCC (3d) 112 (N.S.S.C. A.D.)], a woman took merchandise from Sobeys and claimed it was to show that security was lax. The court believed this and found that she did not take �fraudulently�. As a result, if Grewal can prove he was attempting a sting, he might very well have not acted �corruptly�.

Even if the court is convinced that Grewal was actually attempting to obtain something, there will still be a question about the meaning of �corruptly�. For the general law on bribery, Section 426, the court interpreted �corruptly� to mean �without disclosure�. Since Grewal publicized part of the tapes before the vote, he might have avoided criminal liability.

However, that interpretation was partly based on the fact that s. 426 is titled �Secret Commissions�. Since 119 is about a broader concept of �Corruption� and in a section on �Offences Against the Administration of Law and Justice�, taping conversations and editing them could well be included as �corrupt�. It is not possible to give a certain opinion on this.

Return to the FAQ


Post a Comment

<< Home