Monday, July 16, 2012

The Douglas Inquiry: Testimony Day 1!

Good Day Readers:

Sorry for the delay but had e-mail from a couple individuals with a vested interest in the outcome of this Inquiry.

Where to begin? Let's start with Mr. Chapman's testimony. I found it credible but independently asked a veteran lawyer who attended today's session. They too agreed with our assessment. His questioning by Team Pratte-Crain will continue tomorrow. At some point ACJ Douglas' lawyers will have a go at him and counsel Mr. Rocco Galati will have his turn. Don't be surprised if Alex Chapman's testimony stretches into Wednesday.

Shelia Block as far as we could tell was the most prolific note taker with a yellow highlighter close at hand. She also seems to be big on post-its suggesting Mr. Chapman may be in for a major grilling.

We sat in the front row of the public gallery behind Rocco Galati because of the failure of some lawyers, and judges too, to fully avail themselves of the audio equipment speaking of which there were a few glitches again today. Given what this Inquiry will cost taxpayers, one would think an equipment specialist would be available to the Inquiry.

We would like to thank Mr. Galati for graciously answering our questions during breaks in the proceedings. He will be there for the entire time, however, will only be allowed to actively participate until the first of four allegations against Lori Douglas has been heard. There is the possibility he could rise on a point(s) of law as he deems necessary. His final active involvement will be presenting a summation before the Inquiry Committee adjourns to reach a decision in what is expected to take at least two weeks.

Another interesting point. When a final decision is handed down any of the counsel have the right to file an appeal in The Federal Court of Canada. We asked "Rocky" should that happen how long would it likely take to get a trial date based on his experience. He indicated it was too difficult to accurately predict but more than likely months.

As for who among the male counsel is best dressed, including the two Panel members, nolo contendere Guy Pratte. He, in our opinion, was the most spiffy, nattily attired counsel in court today.

Who will likely "win" at the Inquiry? Well, from observing lawyers it's usually those with the most paper and nicest shoes which goes to "Pratte the Cat." Very expensive looking and well shinned too!

The Delichte File

Yesterday we posted the inaugural article in what will be a series. It involves a divorce/child custody case in Manitoba Queen's Bench Family Division that has been in play since March of 2004 when the first of what is now 394 documents were filed. It involves Winnipeger Karyn Lynne Delichte (currently doing graduate work in the United States) and ex-Winnipeg Blue Bomber Brendan Noel Rogers a Certified Financial Management Adviser with RBC Securities (FD04-01-73022).

We were attracted to this case because of the involvement of Mr. Jack King (Yes, that Jack King!) and possibly another principal from Gange Goodman & French.You may recall it was William Gange who negotiated the $25,000 confidential payout to Alex Chapman on behalf of Jack King.

During the lunch break we visited The Law Courts to determine the status of the file. Currently it resides with Justice Herbert Rempel one of several Justices who has cycled through and ruled in this case. With so much documentation, we imagine when we finally get access File Registry staff will have to use their special wheelbarrow.

We will be filing our Testimony Day 2 report as soon as we can after the Inquiry concludes Tuesday.

Clare L. Pieuk


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