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In Dalton McGuinty’s Ontario…

April 15th, 2010


The last time I wrote an In Dalton McGuinty’s Ontario post, it was about Rahim Jaffer’s plea from impaired driving and possession of cocaine to careless driving. One commentator took me mildly, and fairly, to task:

What the fu- does this have to do with McGuinty? You are seriously reaching dude.

I thought hard before attaching that story to the “In Dalton McGuinty’s Ontario…” meme. I was not, as anon suggested, trying to tie the story directly to McGuinty. However, there is a culture in Ontario justice that I felt was at play here. It was Dalton’s Police force, lead by Dalton’s hand picked chief, that charged Jaffer. It was Dalton’s crown who decided there was no chance at conviction:

According to sources close to the case, police made two fateful decisions: repeatedly denying Jaffer access to his own lawyers and a strip search after he was pulled over on a rural road on Sept. 11 in the southern Ontario community of Palgrave, northwest of Toronto…

A so-called “blow test… came up positive.

[OPP officer Kim] Stapleton handcuffed the former rising star of the Conservative Party and placed him in her cruiser… she then went back to the Ford Escape and grabbed Jaffer’s sport jacket from the passenger seat.

She noticed a bag inside one of the pockets — what would later be determined to be about a gram of cocaine… for which possession is a federal crime…

He tried to contact two lawyers in Calgary, but couldn’t reach them and left a message…

Midway through the test, one of Jaffer’s Calgary lawyers called the detachment several times but was told he must wait because the breathalyzer was being administered… The second lawyer also returned Jaffer’s call in that time and was told it was too late… legal experts say he should have been given the opportunity to speak to counsel of his choice…

Shortly after the breathalyzer, police made another key decision: to strip search the former MP, an act [Toronto defence lawyer Scott] Cowan argues wasn’t “defensible at all” in the Jaffer case.

The Dalton’s Ontario tag is meant to catalogue issues that arise in Ontario, not necessarily that are a direct link to Dalton McGuinty, but which can, I think, be attributable to the culture which McGuinty is harvesting in Ontario. McGuinty wears this case because his police force screwed up, his crowns don’t have the guts/resources to try cases that hinge on a technicality (note the complete lack of suggestion that Jaffer was not a)drunk b)in possesion of the cocaine).

The truth is Jaffer got off because he had the phone number of two lawyers at his disposal. Anybody wealthy enough or who has worked in legal and political circles has an inherent advantage. And that’s not about to change as long as it is, Dalton McGuinty’s Ontario.

In Dalton McGuinty’s Ontario… , ,

  1. Anon
    April 15th, 2010 at 22:00 | #1

    Dalton McGuinty’s police are not only responsible for screwing up Jaffer’s life, they started the ball rolling on the ruination of his wife’s as well. The Liberals and the NDP has hounded this couple from the day Jaffer was arrested and even after her resignation and his business in tatters, they are still going after them. This is personal vendetta if there ever was one. Will a suicide from one or both satisfy their blood lust?

  2. real conservative
    April 15th, 2010 at 22:34 | #2

    Come on now, Jaffer and Helena are not responsible for anything going on here? On the other hand we know the leftist media, desperate to win and destroy the hated conservatives is trying to make a mole hill into a mountain. Like they always do in fact about anything negative coming from the opposition. What is really funny is that they have that wooden dummy Iggy in the background who is useless just watching what is going on. (real conservative)

  3. April 16th, 2010 at 09:06 | #3

    > his police force screwed up, his crowns don’t have the guts/resources to try cases that hinge on a technicality

    I think I’d rather have a police force and justice system that are at arms-length from the government of the day. The screw up had nothing to do with McGuinty.

    Remember, this also happened in Stephen Harper’s “Tough on Crime” Canada…

  4. real conservative
    April 16th, 2010 at 16:16 | #4

    Marc, Harper hasn’t been able to implement his tough on crime agenda due to your liberal friends who like prisoners voting for them so they can be in power perpetually.

  5. April 17th, 2010 at 08:41 | #5

    I would add, Marc, that you kind of made my point for me. Harper is trying to change things, but this is the world McGuinty wants us to live in.

    I too, think the police force should be at arms length and then some from the government, but the aren’t. Not this government, not this police force. Again, kind of the point I was making there.

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