Newspaper article The Canadian Press

RCMP Doctored Flight Logs and Flew Overweight, Says Integrity Commissioner

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

RCMP Doctored Flight Logs and Flew Overweight, Says Integrity Commissioner

Article excerpt

RCMP doctored flight logs: integrity watchdog

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OTTAWA - RCMP pilots doctored flight manifests in order to fly over-loaded aircraft, the federal integrity commissioner said Tuesday as he dismissed several other serious allegations from a whistleblower for lack of evidence.

Commissioner Mario Dion says he could not establish whether the RCMP flights in 2012 posed a danger to the life, health or safety of anyone because the true weight of the aircraft is not known.

"The records were, not being accurate, it's impossible to determine actually what was the total weight of the plane on any given flight and therefore impossible to determine whether it did constitute a risk to health and safety," Dion said in conference call.

Several other serious allegations from a whistleblower -- including that RCMP planes were flown without valid airworthiness certificates, that pilots with lapsed credentials were scheduled to fly and that the RCMP overpaid to house planes at a commercial hangar recommended by a staff member -- could not be substantiated "on the balance of probabilities," Dion said.

His report remains under a legal challenge from the federal government, which wanted to quash his findings before they could be made public.

However a judge last week rejected the bid by the federal attorney general and Dion says his mandate includes public disclosure of wrongdoing.

The RCMP and the government continue to contest the manner in which Dion pursued the complaint and they are seeking all records of the integrity commissioner's investigation, including interview notes and any materials obtained from interviewees.

"We have to produce everything we have on file concerning this matter," said Dion.

"We are taking appropriate steps to ensure the confidentiality of the important pieces of information, such as the identity of the whistleblower."

Judge Roger Hughes of the Federal Court gave all parties to the case 15 days to identify which portions of the evidence should remain confidential.

The RCMP said Tuesday that because it moved to address the complaints last year, they should not have been investigated and made public. …

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