Saturday, April 18, 2015

Decision delayed on whether to unseal evidence in case that could reveal Harper family secrets

For once I am inclining to agree with a publication ban.

I base this on the assumption the judge likely had a pretty good reason to place a ban.

Courts have authority to order publication bans where necessary to prevent a serious risk to the proper administration of justice and where reasonably alternative measures will not suffice. Courts will weigh the various rights and principles – the right to a fair and public trial, the right to freedom of expression, and the efficacy of the administration of justice – in determining whether such a ban is necessary.

Supposing the sealed information deals with "Harper family secrets" why should that be put in the public realm? After all the only reason why this information is in RCMPolice hands is because of protection issues.

Now I do agree a judge should review what it is and explain, albeit generally, why it is to be kept under wraps - contrary to the usual practice (although personal details in family and criminal law are often sealed).

If the information was, say, Mr Harper being abusive to RCMPolice Officers (and I very much doubt that ever happened) then it should be public. But if the information deals with, say, medical issues for Mr Harper's children (and again I use this merely as an example) there really is no reason for it to be public.

1 comment:

the salamander said...

.. Judge, and both lawyers seemed to have focus on Witness X identity issue. That Harper Family secrets seem to be packaged with 3 or more other files & are somehow aligned with private investigator Snowdy reports or innuendo, or RCMP investigations seems odd. It seems Harper privacy has paramountcy.. over a plaintiff's 10 year struggle. Was Harper family file included in error? Or to protect it somehow? It does seem the PM feels his privacy is paramount and at will can call on Justice Lawyers or invoke terrorism secrecy law.. but via Bill C51 all ordinary Canadians should expect no such Charter Rights.. indeed should expect violation of privacy.