Ed John Lawsuit Against The Radical Newspaper

PRESS RELEASE:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
QUESNEL, B.C.: FRIDAY, APRIL 20, 2001

The announcement on Thursday, April 19, 2001 by Ed John, Minister of Children & Families that he has filed a lawsuit against The Radical newspaper claiming defamation and slander comes as no surprise to Publisher & Editor Arthur Topham.

Topham has been carrying articles on Ed John since the Fall of 1999 when he first learned of allegations against John that were made during a UN-sponsored Tribunal into Residential School abuse held in June of 1998 in Vancouver, BC.

Sworn testimony by survivors linked Ed John to a number of criminal activities which included fraud, drug running, and connections with a pedophile ring operating in the province. John was issued a summons to appear before the Tribunal at the time but refused to appear.

According to Topham the crucial question here is not whether libel or defamation has taken place but the fact that Ed John has filed the lawsuit on the very same day that the provincial writ was dropped. 'This is just another example of the type of cover-up thatís been going on ever since the Tribunal first exposed these allegations. Itís very convenient, now that the election has been called, for Ed John to file a lawsuit and thus provide both himself and Ujjal Dosanjh with a scapegoat in order to avoid answering questions regarding these allegations during the campaign.Ē

At the time of the Tribunal hearings Ujjal Dosanjh was the Attorney General for the province. He was sent a letter by the Tribunal asking for an investigation of the allegations against Chief Ed John. Dosanjh didnít reply to the request. Itís obvious that when Ed John was appointed to this sensitive ministry in October of 2000 that Dosanjh was well aware of the baggage John was carrying with him. Why Dosanjh didnít investigate the allegations is still a mystery and one that the government is desperately trying to conceal during the campaign.

Topham states that he will fight this issue to the bitter end. 'What we have here is a party-elected Premier and an unelected Minister both desperately trying to cover their butts during an election campaign that may well be their last. On top of this John is using taxpayerís money to take me and others to court. Itís not The Radical or those individuals who have been labouring under extreme intimidation to have these allegations addressed who are on trial here. Itís BCís Judicial system itself that must come to terms with its own ineptitude in dealing with internal corruption. Trying to shut down an independent and free newspaper in order to keep the truth hidden isnít going to work.'

For further information contact:
Arthur Topham, Pub/Ed The Radical
Ph: 250-992-3479
Fax: 250-992-3337
Email: radical@radicalpress.com
Box 4004, Quesnel, BC V2J 3J2


Canada:
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Freedom of Press - dead
Freedom of Thought - dead
Freedom of Expression - dead
Freedom of Demonstration - dead

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