From the Vancouver Sun:
Former B.C. government staffer expected to enter guilty plea in triple-delete email scandal
George Gretes, who worked as a ministerial assistant for Transportation Minister Todd Stone, was charged in March with two counts of wilfully making false statements to mislead, or attempt to mislead, the Information and Privacy Commissioner. He was initially scheduled to appear in a Victoria court on Wednesday, but has since had that appearance pushed over to Thursday.
It is expected that Gretes will plead guilty.
After a whistleblower came forward with concerns in 2015, B.C.’s privacy commissioner launched a probe of record-keeping practices in the offices of Premier Christy Clark, the Ministry of Transportation, and the Ministry of Advanced Education.
Privacy Commissioner Elizabeth Denham’s report, released last fall, examined allegations by whistleblower Tim Duncan that in 2014, Gretes had triple-deleted emails about the province’s response to Highway of Tears concerns. Duncan alleged that he was directed by Gretes to delete the emails and that when he hesitated, Gretes took over Duncan’s computer and deleted the emails himself. Gretes then allegedly went into the trash folder of the inbox and deleted the emails there, and again a third time.
The report outlined how Gretes had been evasive when questioned about the emails and his involvement, but later admitted to lying when confronted with evidence. Denham’s report then spurred an RCMP investigation, resulting in two charges under the province’s Freedom of Information and Privacy Act being laid against Gretes in March.
Gretes resigned following the referral of Denham’s report to the RCMP. Gretes is scheduled to appear in Victoria Law Courts Thursday at 2 p.m.
The "Hillary Defense": "I didn't mean any harm when I did it."
As a former government worker...I can vouch for the fact that correct handling of government confidential material is drilled into every employee. We take an oath of office and we pledge to uphold confidentiality and the government's right/duty to preserve accurate records. It's part of the culture of all government bureaucracies and there are no exceptions...except Hillary...apparently.