Special prosecutor Greg DelBigio who was appointed to independently assess any decision on possible charges into a former government staffer who deleted government emails and allegedly lied under oath.
Neil MacKenzie with the Criminal Justice Branch says DelBigio has withdrawn over a potential case of conflict of interest.
“Questions were raised in relation to another matter in which Mr. DelBigio is acting as a defence counsel, the branch hasd some further discussions with DelBigio about that.”
It turns out he is also the defence lawyer for a B.C. Liberal party staffer charged with Election Act violations related to the ethnic outreach scandal.
The branch says out of an abundance of caution and respect for the importance of maintaining public confidence in the administration of justice, he’s withdrawn.
The branch is now looking for a new special prosecutor.
Last month, privacy commissioner Elizabeth Denham slammed the province for its Freedom of Information practices.
She found that employees at more than one ministry, as well as the Premier’s office, were mass-deleting emails related to FOI requests.
One employee, George Gretes, was found to have lied under oath during the investigation. He has since resigned.
Denham alerted the RCMP.
Special prosecutor Greg DelBigio has been appointed to provide the police with legal advice during their investigation.
The issue came up after former Ministry of Transportation employee Tim Duncan sent a letter to the Privacy Comissioner, alleging Gretes told him to delete emails related to the so-called ‘Highway of Tears.’
He says when he refused, Gretes physically took his keyboard and deleted them himself.
Duncan alleges the deletions were regular practice in the ministry.
The subsequent investigation revealed the practice of ‘triple-deleting,’ in which files are completely expunged from government computers, as well as backup servers.
Duncan also wrote that ministry staff were allowed to ‘self report’ responses to Freedom of Information requests.