15. 11. 2018
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RCMP found Travis Vader’s fingerprint and DNA on beer can found in missing couple’s SUV

RCMP found Travis Vader’s fingerprint and DNA on beer can found in missing couple’s SUV

EDMONTON — Accused killer Travis Vader’s fingerprint and DNA were on a beer can found in Lyle and Marie McCann’s SUV, RCMP say in newly released court documents.

Two dozen RCMP officers posed as criminals to build the case against Vader, who’s accused of the murders of the St. Albert couple, missing since 2010.

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Related

  • RCMP paid informant for Travis Vader information: court documents

  • Vader’s lawyer alleges Crown stayed charges to buy time to build ‘circumstantial case’

  • Crown calls Vader case a ‘disclosure fiasco’; Defence seeks to have murder charges dropped

  • Charges stayed against Travis Vader in McCann murders

    Three played major roles in the fabricated plot designed to draw in the prime suspect and coax damning evidence from him; 20 more made cameo appearances. All pretended to be part of a criminal organization looking to recruit Vader, according to documents that became public Monday when a judge granted a request from several local news organizations, including Global Edmonton, to lift a publication ban. The documents have not been presented or proven in court.

    In part, the documents read like a sort of laundry list of leads and theories to tie Vader to the 2010 crime.

    A paralegal working with the lead prosecutor even made a “things to do” list. On it was a note about Sheri Lynn Campbell, who used to share a home with Vader and whom he described to RCMP as his alibi.

    Text messages between the pair indicate that Campbell told police Vader was at the home from 2 a.m. on July 2, 2010, to 2 a.m. July 3, the day the McCanns were last seen as they gassed up their motorhome in preparation for a trip to B.C.

    READ MORE: The disappearance of Lyle and Marie McCann

    Two days later, the burned-out motorhome was found at a campground near Edson. Then, on July 16, the Hyundai Tucson SUV the couple had been pulling was found concealed about 25 kilometres east of the town. Inside, RCMP found the beer can, Marie McCann’s blood and Lyle McCann’s hat with a bullet hole in it. They say Vader used the couple’s cellphone at about 2 p.m. that day.

    READ MORE: Evidence ties Travis Vader to missing St. Albert couple’s SUV: Crown summary

    Vader was arrested on July 19, but he wasn’t charged with the murders until April 2012. The bodies of the McCanns have never been found.

    In March 2014, a month before his trial was to begin, Crown prosecutor Michelle Doyle stayed the charges, citing a huge gap in disclosure provided by the RCMP to the defence. Doyle said she was confident Vader would be convicted, but was concerned he may not receive a fair trial. Nine months later, the stay was lifted and the first-degree murder charges applied again.

    Vader is fighting to have the case thrown out, accusing the Crown of trying to buy more time to collect evidence. A judge is expected to rule on the abuse-of-process claim at the end of the month. If Vader’s trial goes ahead, it is scheduled to start March 7.

    READ MORE: ‘It appears that the police rushed to a judgement’: Vader’s lawyer 

    The paralegal jotted notes about the disclosure set-back, writing “2 years fought to keep in Vader. MD feels betrayed.”

    The documents released Monday also recount evidence from a man who said Vader gave him a “gold ruby ring” that belonged to the McCanns. The man said Vader took it from the motorhome and kept it at a cabin near his father’s place, along with “a lot more stuff.”

    The documents reveal that, as well as mounting the sizable undercover case, RCMP paid a jailhouse informant for information against Vader.

    In a sworn affidavit among the documents, an RCMP sergeant said as many as 10 undercover operations are going on in Alberta at any given time, lasting from several weeks to several years, with some remaining open indefinitely.

    It’s a dangerous job, said the sergeant, who coordinates undercover operations in Alberta.

    “I am aware of situations where suspects or targets have clearly indicated the intention to kill an officer upon discovery of an undercover operator’s true identity.”

    In one case, an operation was terminated because the suspect became suspicious, the sergeant said. RCMP intercepted audio of the suspect’s girlfriend reading newspaper coverage of the Jason Dix murder trial, when he realized he was the target of the same strategy used against Dix.

    RCMP spent months on an elaborate, undercover “Mr. Big” operation to gather evidence against Dix for the 1994 deaths of Tim Ordzyk, 33, and James Deiter, 24, whose bodies were discovered at a paper recycling plant in Sherwood Park. RCMP first thought they had been electrocuted, but both had been shot in the head three times.

    Dix spent nearly two years in jail and the case was eventually thrown out because of lack of evidence. He sued the Crown and RCMP for malicious prosecution and was awarded $765,000 in 2002. The case remains unsolved.

15. 11. 2018
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Manitoba Ombudsman report leaves questions unanswered in dam purchase

Manitoba Ombudsman report leaves questions unanswered in dam purchase

WINNIPEG —; The Manitoba government was not justified in an initial attempt to buy $5 million in flood-fighting equipment from a specific contractor without bids from others, the province’s ombudsman said Thursday.

But the 35-page report from Charlene Paquin also says that, in the end, the NDP government followed the rules.

The report neither completely clears nor condemns the government in a controversy it has faced since 2014.

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RELATED: Report raises questions over provincial spending on flood fighting equipment

The issue flared when Infrastructure Minister Steve Ashton tried to get approval for water-filled barrier tubes called Tiger Dams for flood-prone First Nations communities in the Interlake region north of Winnipeg.

An anonymous whistleblower complained to the ombudsman that Ashton pushed to have the contract awarded to a company run by a friend, who has contributed money to both Ashton’s and the NDP’s election campaigns.

In the end, the contract was put up for open bidding, but was never awarded. The First Nations communities went to the federal government to get the equipment.

RELATED: Manitoba premier welcomes probe into contract

The ombudsman’s report says senior public servants were concerned with Ashton’s attempt to sole-source the contract and pushed to have other equipment considered.

“Individuals we spoke with … indicated that departmental staff did not agree with waiving a competitive procurement process,” the report reads.

“However, as noted previously, the department was directed by the minister … to draft a submission that proposed an untendered contract for Tiger Dams.”

Government rules allow for contracts to be awarded without open bidding in sudden emergencies or when a specific product is needed and there is only one supplier.

“In this case, we did not review any evidence that the … requirements for ‘sole-source’ procurement were met,” Paquin wrote.

The report leaves questions about the actions of Ashton and other politicians largely unanswered, because the ombudsman does not have the power to investigate members of the legislature.

RELATED: Manitoba ombudsman to look at First Nations flood-fight purchasing

A government source, with first-hand knowledge of the discussions, told last year that Ashton made the request to the provincial Treasury Board, which insisted on open bidding.

The matter went to cabinet and Premier Greg Selinger initially backed Ashton’s request, said the source, who would only speak on condition of anonymity.

Selinger said last year he insisted on a full discussion by cabinet and Treasury Board, and then directed the contract be put up for bidding.

Ashton said First Nations communities asked specifically for Tiger Dams, which are distributed by only one company in Manitoba.

“They put forward what they wanted and needed,” Ashton said Thursday.

The ombudsman’s report does not delve into cabinet discussions at the time, but notes that some five weeks passed between when Treasury Board called for open contract bidding and when Ashton’s deputy minister agreed.

“We’ve all learned … we probably should have gone to tender right away. But I want to stress that our government makes no apologies for the intent of what we were doing,” Ashton said, referring to the need to help flood-prone communities.

Kelvin Goertzen, house leader for the Opposition Progressive Conservatives, said the premier should remove Ashton from cabinet.

“The NDP tried to override the civil service,” he said.

“The premier has to decide whether or not this is the kind of direction he wants within his government.”

15. 11. 2018
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Iran sanctions and others a burden for Canada

Iran sanctions and others a burden for Canada

OTTAWA – Canada’s pending decision to lift sanctions on Iran will likely spark cheers at the country’s foreign ministry because the ever-expanding program has posed legal and staffing burdens.

A briefing note prepared for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau describes internal problems associated with one of Canada’s few foreign policy sticks — the sanctions imposed on nine countries, including Iran, North Korea and Russia.

The note was obtained by under the Access to Information Act.

Canada is expected to follow the world in lifting sanctions on Iran because it has complied with a landmark deal with six leading world powers that is aimed at preventing it from developing a nuclear bomb.

WATCH: Trudeau says he’s ‘pleased’ with Iran nuclear deal


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Canadian sanctions are imposed under two separate regimes: the United Nations and its own Special Economic Measures Act, or SEMA.

SEMA has proven problematic for officials at Global Affairs Canada because the number of countries facing sanctions under it has jumped to nine from two since 2010, the memo says, creating a heavy workload and legal headaches.

This has resulted in “greatly increasing the compliance burden for the private sector and creating resource and potential litigation challenges” for the department.

“As these procedural regimes have started to mature, foreign courts have begun to demand that increased procedural fairness be present in the listing and delisting of persons under such sanctions,” it says.

“It is likely that Canadian courts will demand the same procedural fairness in the event that any of Canada’s sanctions are challenged in court.”

A separate briefing note, also written for Trudeau last fall, says it is likely that Canada will be in a position to lift its Iranian sanctions “as early as winter 2016 and as late as summer 2016.”

READ MORE: U.S. imposing new sanctions on Iran for ballistic missile test: Obama

With Iran found to be in compliance with the nuclear deal as of last weekend, it would appear that the lifting of sanctions is imminent.

Trudeau has said Canada will also restore diplomatic relations with Iran, but the prime minister indicated Monday his cabinet will set the timing of that decision during an upcoming meeting.

Trudeau said he was pleased that “quiet diplomacy” led to successful negotiation of the Iran deal and would move it “towards respecting international expectations.”

Speaking to reporters at a cabinet retreat in New Brunswick, Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion said his fellow ministers would soon decide whether and how to lift the economic sanctions still in place.

Canadian companies won’t be able to compete for Iranian contracts until the sanctions are lifted, giving a leg up to their American counterparts. Dion suggested cabinet would make a decision quickly so as not to disadvantage Canadian companies.

WATCH: Lifting of Iran sanctions could further fuel oil’s slide, loonie drop

It may take longer, he said, to reopen the embassy in Iran.

“That’s something also that we’ll have to do step by step, how to re-engage with Iran when all the links have been cut,” Dion said.

“It cannot be done overnight, but the prime minister said very clearly during the campaign that this is something that we want to do properly in a timely fashion.”

Interim Conservative leader Rona Ambrose said the government should be wary about lifting sanctions on Iran, because it has not been trustworthy in the past.

“Let’s remember that once those sanctions are removed that Iran is going to flood the market with cheap oil, which has a huge effect on the Canadian economy as well,” she said.

The deal that Iran forged with the five permanent members of the UN Security Council — the U.S., Britain, France, Russia and China — plus Germany, is expected to provide it an estimated $100 billion in sanctions relief.

15. 02. 2019
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Courts to decide public access to prized fishing lake

Courts to decide public access to prized fishing lake

NEAR MERRITT – A small lake adjacent to the Okanagan Connector is known for producing giant-sized Rainbow trout.

But for many years, public access to Corbett Lake has been blocked off by the owners of the lake’s fishing lodge.

The Nicola Valley Fish & Game Club believes the lake should be accessible to everyone.

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“He fenced off the public access and put up no trespassing signs and everybody thought that was a legal thing to do but in fact it wasn’t,” says club spokesperson Rick McGowan. “It’s a public road and you can’t close a public road without going through the highways road closure process, which has never happened.”

McGowan says they’ve got the legal documents to prove their point.

To push the issue, club members ice-fished the lake twice in the past year.

Some were charged with criminal mischief and ordered by the courts to stay 400 metres away from the water.

“We don’t look at it as civil disobedience,” says McGowan. “The crimes being committed are on the other side for the illegal blocking of public roads.”

The club claims the Douglas Lake Ranch is also wrongly blocking public access to two prime fishing lakes south of Kamloops.

McGowan says they look forward to arguing the issue in court.

“It’s private entrepreneurs wanting to lock the public out to take control of those lakes. That’s what’s going on.”

One of the owners of Corbett Lake Lodge turned down an interview request by Global Okanagan News, referring us their recent advertisement in the Merritt Herald newspaper.

It says the provincial government has determined the land around the lake is private property and the owners have the legal right to close off public access.

McGowan says people from all over the province have donated more than $100,000 to help fund the club’s legal fight, adding he’s willing to go to jail over the issue.

“We want to fight this fight to protect public spaces for all future generations.”

15. 02. 2019
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B.C. wineries look for clarity in wine labelling

B.C. wineries look for clarity in wine labelling

BURNABY – When it comes to wine labels, John Skinner is all about seeking the truth. The owner of Penticton-based Painted Rock Estate Winery has been fighting to ensure wines produced in other countries are labeled accurately.

He, along with several small and medium wineries, doesn’t want those wines confused with British Columbia wines. 

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“If you pick up a bottle that says ‘cellared in Canada’ or ‘bottled in British Columbia’ and you don’t know that the juice came from Chile, that undermines the brand of British Columbia wines that we are trying to build on the international stage,” Skinner says.

Several wineries in B.C. say the marketing and labelling of some wines sold in our province are too similar to Vintners Quality Alliance (VQA) wines, which are made from 100 per cent B.C. grapes.

B.C. VQA certified wines must meet rigorous standards. Wines not bearing the B.C. VQA symbol and not tasted for quality may be labelled “product of British Columbia.” These wines are still made from B.C. grapes, but have not gone through the B.C. VQA certification process.

Blended wines, on the other hand, are often labelled “cellared in Canada from imported and domestic wines” or “bottled in B.C.” There is nothing to indicate the country where the grapes came from, so those same bottles often end up in the B.C. wine section of a liquor store.

Under Canadian federal law, all wine sold in Canada must contain a statement of origin on the label. However, the Canadian Food and Inspection Agency is currently allowing wineries to only say the bottle is a blend of international and domestic wines, rather than listing which countries the grapes originated from.

Wine lawyer Mark Hicken says, “From the perspective of the larger wineries that are producing those blended wines, their view is that they are compliant with the federal law because they are following what the federal agency is telling them, but the smaller wineries would like to see an actual statement of origin on the label.”

Skinner adds, “When people are producing wines and making them sound like they come from British Columbia and deceiving the consumer, the consumer has a jaundiced view of British Columbia wines and we can’t tolerate that anymore.”

Cellared in Canada wine often contains grapes bought in bulk from places like Chile, California, and Australia. Commodity wines often sell for less than $11 a bottle. About 30 per cent of the B.C. wine market is made up of this type of wine. Lesley Brown from Trialto Wine Group, a premium wine agency, says, “There’s a majority of consumers purchasing those wines [who] believe they are Canadian wines and that’s an issue.”

Skinner says, “Any other food product requires you to say where it came from – except this stuff. This is appalling.” Still, he adds, “This will be solved because the consumer will not tolerate this anymore.”

15. 02. 2019
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Ready or not: multi-family recycling soon mandatory in Calgary

Ready or not: multi-family recycling soon mandatory in Calgary

CALGARY – There’s something new rolling out at apartments, townhouses and condos around Calgary.

Recycling for multi-family units must be in place by Feb. 1 according to a new city bylaw.

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Related

  • Two thirds of multi-family homes in Calgary still without recycling

    “We allowed 16 months between when the bylaw was approved from when we’re going to enforce to allow that uptake of service to multi-family complexes,” said Parnell Legg, a waste diversion specialist with the City of Calgary.

    The city suggests about 40 per cent of condo boards are already on board and more are likely waiting for the February deadline.

    BluPlanet is among dozens of private companies specializing in multi-family recycling removal. It picked up contacts for over 10,000 new homes in 2015.

    “It’s been astronomical,” said Stuart Van Berkle, operations manager for BluPlanet Recycling.  “The growth has been almost too much to handle at some points.”

    He worries many condo units are late setting up recycling contracts – and may have a difficult time finding a company able to take them on by the end of the month.

    “I think there are some buildings that are a little more behind but… we’re doing about 50 new buildings a month so that’s pretty much all we handle for now. I think some other companies are getting pretty busy as well,” said Van Berkle.

    It’s a challenge for condo boards – fitting the new cost into the budget as well as fitting the bins into their complexes.

    “I think, in most condominiums, the space is very limited. I mean, most were built to only accommodate the garbage bins,” said Marian Rodriguez, a property manager with Diversified Management Southern. The company oversees over 50 properties and she said most are prepared for the new bylaw.

    The city said there will be an education period, but $250 fines could be considered by animal and bylaw services if condo boards are not in compliance.

    It could be a big adjustment.

    “Most of our condominiums have started this recycling business around the end of December through January,” said Rodriguez. “We’re finding a lot of people are using the recycling bin as their garbage disposal.”

    Rodriguez suggested condo boards in compliance haven’t seen any big reduction in waste so far, but stresses education will be important going forward.

    If the bylaw works, the city suggests about 25 per cent of waste from multi-family homes can be diverted from landfills.

15. 02. 2019
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Commute with a smile: Driver Jon offers more than your typical LRT ride

Commute with a smile: Driver Jon offers more than your typical LRT ride

EDMONTON – Jon Morgan has been an LRT operator for five years, but he doesn’t just offer passengers a ride from point A to point B; he entertains them as well.

“I point out interesting things about each station, some of the artwork they can find at the station,” Morgan said.

Morgan is being praised by riders for his positive attitude and wealth of knowledge. As his train moves along, he tells passengers about nearby landmarks, parks, local history and even some lesser known fun facts about the area.

ChangSha Night Net

Related

  • ‘Don’t let idiots build your transit’: Reporter rips into Edmonton’s Metro LRT Line

  • ETS hike: Edmonton Transit fares going up in February

    Edmonton Transit Peace Officer raps

    “That’d be the original garage Edmonton Transit opened up back in the late 1970s, when Edmonton first opened its LRT system,” he said as the LRT approached Colliseum Station.

    When the train got to Commonwealth, he pointed out nearby amenities, restaurants, and, of course: “the home of your 2015 Grey Cup Champions!”

    “I love our city and I like to learn as much as I can about our city, relay it across to the people,” he said.

    Plus, his goal is to make his riders just a bit happier.

    “I just like to brighten people’s days as much as possible,” Morgan said.

    “It’s really rewarding, really rewarding. To see them have a smile on their face at the start of the day, or the end of the day. I just want to make sure they’re having a good day.”

    His approach seems to be working. Edmonton Transit has received phone calls and social media comments celebrating Morgan’s style.

    “Jon’s great,” Edmonton Transit spokesperson, Jennifer Laraway, said. “When we hear feedback that one of our operators has made their day, that’s what we like to hear.”

    WATCH: Edmonton Transit Peace Officer raps 

    Morgan is in good company. Laraway said other LRT operators try to put a personal touch on their routes as well.

    “We’ve heard of stories where they’re singing their announcements as they arrive into an LRT station, or, if it’s the holidays, wearing a Santa Claus hat, even singing jazz,” she said.

    “If you’re a transit user, you know what that means in that kind of community. It puts a smile on your face and it makes your commute that much better.”

    Kevin Hearn rides Morgan’s train everyday.

    “It’s nice,” he said. “It gives it a little bit of life when we’re riding the train, especially when he’s telling you information about places where you can shop, that sort of thing.”

    Passenger Carolynn LaJeunesse agrees Morgan’s routes brighten people’s days.

    “It kind of puts a smile on your face for the day.”

15. 02. 2019
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Canadian travellers report illnesses at Cuban resorts promoted and operated by Sunwing

Canadian travellers report illnesses at Cuban resorts promoted and operated by Sunwing

TORONTO – Unsanitary washrooms, unsafe food handling practices, unrelenting stomach pains, vomiting and diarrhea: these are some of the complaints being reported about popular Canadian vacations destinations in Cuba promoted and operated by Sunwing Vacations of Toronto.

“It’s very severe, and I am struggling a week later,” said Amanda Klein of Medicine Hat, Alta., who recently returned from Cuba and says she is still experiencing stomach problems.

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UPDATE: More Canadian vacationers come forward with reports of illness on Sunwing trips

Klein, 26, spent a week with her boyfriend and two other Canadian couples at the Memories Paraiso Azul Beach Hotel in Cayo Santa Maria, Cuba between Jan. 5 and 12.

But within days of the Canadians’ arrival, Klein says five of the six guests were violently ill with vomiting and diarrhea.

Klein says the group stopped eating at the all-inclusive resort–which they booked through Sunwing Vacations–after witnessing troubling food-handling practices.

READ MORE: Sunwing under fire after Cuban resort outbreak

“Numerous staff put their hands in food, licked their hands and put their hands in the food we were supposed to eat,” she said.

She said her group became alarmed when they watched staff members clearing tables in the buffet restaurant.

“They would collect the dirty dishes from the tables, and if it looked like they weren’t used, then left them on the table,” Klein told Global News, adding many of the dishes were dirty.

In 2015, Global News reported extensively on illnesses at the resort that affected Canadian vacationers. Last week, visitors to the Memories resort and certain other Cuba resorts began reporting sickness similar to those that were documented last year.

READ MORE: Sunwing offers compensation to Canadian travellers after outbreak at Cuban resort

When Marcy Mullings of Hamilton began reading new Facebook complaints about the resort, she got worried and called Sunwing in search of answers.

But she says the tour operator denied there were any problems.

“They said you can’t believe everything you read; they said it’s a hoax, that someone is trying to tarnish Sunwing’s name,” Mullings said.

Unconvinced by the response, Mullings says she asked to speak to a supervisor and requested that she could change the vacation she booked with her family to the resort later this month. She said Sunwing refused.

Klein is among a growing number of Sunwing customers who contacted Global News to complain about becoming ill at the Memories Paraiso Azul resort. Many have posted their accounts of poor conditions and illnesses on Facebook and on GlobalNews长沙夜网.

But, Sunwing says it’s is not aware of a significant problem at the resort in Cuba.

“To date the hotel management team at Memories Paraiso Azul has advised us that they have not been made aware of any such cases,” said Jacqueline Grossman, senior director of marketing for Sunwing Vacations.

Grossman says the health and wellbeing of its customers is the company’s “primary concern.”

She acknowledged, however, that travelers have reported illnesses to Sunwing.

“In the past week our customer service department has received information from 10 clients complaining of gastro-illness during their stay at this resort over the last month,” Grossman said.

Sunwing travellers say they got sick at other resorts in Cuba in the last month, too.

Anne Cameron of Mississauga, Ont., just returned with family members from the Memories resort in Varadero, Cuba. In addition to becoming ill along with other Canadian travellers, Cameron said she was “disgusted” with conditions at the four-star resort, especially the public washrooms.

“They were clogged with feces and toilet paper to the brim. In some cases there were urine and feces on the floor,” Cameron said.

Some Sunwing customers who got ill or frustrated with conditions at the Memories Paraiso Azul resort, which Sunwing ranks 4.5 stars, complained to the company and demanded compensation.

Lorna Hoffman and her husband stayed at the resort last April.

“It was a horrible time as we were there without running water for three days, piles of dirty dishes at poolside all week and hamburgers served on toilet paper,” Hoffman said.

After paying $2,400 for the trip, Hoffman says she reluctantly agreed to $108 compensation. But nine months later, Hoffman hasn’t even received the token amount.

“We still have not received the $108 even after submitting another form a second time as asked. Still haven’t received the cheque,” she said. “Sunwing does not care about their customers at all!”

Klein says complaints about the resort can’t be ignored.

“People need to know this is a bad place,” she said. “They need to change something or close their doors.”

15. 01. 2019
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Vancouver man finds out another passenger flew under his name on WestJet flight

Vancouver man finds out another passenger flew under his name on WestJet flight

A Vancouver man was shocked to find out that another passenger was able to fly under his name on a WestJet flight from Calgary to Vancouver on Sunday.

Jonathan Sutherland says when he was unable to check in to his scheduled flight at the self-serve kiosk, he talked to an agent, which is when he was informed that his plane has already left with another passenger in his place.

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“[The agent] advised me that I have already travelled from Calgary to Vancouver on an earlier flight. I advised her that was incorrect. I was standing right there,” he said.

Initially, Sutherland thought it was an administrative error, but after getting in touch with WestJet’s head office, it turned out a gate agent checked in another passenger with a similar last name to an earlier 2 p.m. flight as opposed to the 6:45 p.m. flight, which Sutherland was supposed to be on.

As a frequent flier, Sutherland says he is surprised the glitch happened because of the number of checks in place.

He says his ID always gets checked at the counter before obtaining a boarding pass.

The next check comes when he goes through security and provides his boarding pass.

Finally, both ID and boarding pass have to be checked at the gate in order to be able to board the plane.

“At that point, the gate agent is looking at your picture, they are looking at your first name, last name, making sure all of it is the same,” Sutherland said. “WestJet does an announcement to advise before boarding that if there is a problem with identification and your name does not match perfectly to your boarding pass, that it is to be addressed at that time.”

Sutherland was rebooked on another flight and said WestJet acknowledged there were gaps that allowed the other passenger to be put on the plane.

WestJet released the following statement to Global News:

WestJet sincerely apologizes to the guest for his experience this past Sunday. All guests are screened through airport security so there was no safety risk to the public. We are reviewing the incident with the agents involved.

Sutherland says WestJet told him the incident would be addressed within the company’s internal policies.

He says he hopes it’s an isolated incident.

“It’s concerning because I feel like the passenger may not have been properly vetted,” he said. “My concern is that if the individual that was sitting on the plane as me did anything or caused any concerns, it would be me who would be held accountable for it, as my name was on that reservation.”

Sutherland says he filed a report with the Calgary police about what happened.

He also wants Transport Canada to review this situation and work with the airline to fix the gaps.

15. 01. 2019
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Calgary bartering exchange ‘eXmerce’ gaining popularity with businesses

Calgary bartering exchange ‘eXmerce’ gaining popularity with businesses

CALGARY – Companies trying to survive the slow economic times are discovering how bartering can help bring in new business, using a website that allows promotion and trade between members without cash.

Kellie Mallette runs a successful bookkeeping business and owes part of her success to bartering. She belongs to the eXmerce barter network, and regularly trades accounting and tax services for things she needs in her business, or her personal life.

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“It really does work like a bank account,” Mallette said. “We do taxes for somebody else in the club, and then out of 350 members, we can go and choose what services we want to use.”

eXmerce helps promote and trade products and services between its members without using cash. Businesses or individuals pay a fee to join and then “earn” or bank trade credits for work they exchange.

“What this means to a business, is whatever you (as a business) would normally charge out there in the cash world, that’s what you would charge in trade dollars throughout network,” eXmerce’s Nelson Liem said.  “What happens is when you bank the trade dollars in your account, it enables you to start purchasing other products and services with any one of the members that’s part of the network.”

Mallette says she barters for marketing and technology services, and even bartered to have her office painted.

Bartering is recognized by the Canada Revenue Agency as legal payment, and all transactions through eXmerce are claimed as revenue like cash.

One trade dollar is equal to one cash dollar, and anything you barter for your business can be written off as a business expense.

Allan Wirzba owns AW Painting in Calgary, and says bartering helps him network with potential clients and leads to new referrals.

He said it’s also valuable when things are slow, replacing cash customers with barter business.

“In the last three months, I have been able to request services from members here in this barter exchange,” Wirzba said. “Each one of those times no money was exchanged, and that preserves and saves my operating capital as a business–and saves money.”

While eXmerce caters to business exchanges, both Wirzba and Mallette have used their barter credits for personal or family use around the house.

15. 01. 2019
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Trial underway for Regina couple accused of killing four-year-old, abusing toddler

Trial underway for Regina couple accused of killing four-year-old, abusing toddler

REGINA – The trial for a Regina couple charged in the death of a young child in their care four years ago officially began Monday.

Kevin and Tammy Goforth are facing second degree murder charges and are also accused of abusing and neglecting the victim’s younger sister.

The children were in the Goforths’ care from January to August 2012.
The trial is expected to take three weeks and will hear testimony from 16 different witnesses including investigators, child protection workers and the accused themselves.

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It was an emotional day in court, as the victim’s mother sobbed when the Crown delivered opening statements, recapping the condition of the four-year-old when she was brought to Regina General Hospital in 2012.

Prosecutor Dana Brule said evidence will show the child was only “skin and bones.”

The young girl died in hospital on August 2 and investigation led to the discovery of her two-year-old sister, who was also taken to hospital for nine days and suspected to be abused.

The Crown alleges the pair were malnourished and they intend to prove there’s evidence suggesting both children were physically restrained while in the care of the Goforths.

Defence lawyers Jeff Deagle and Noah Evanchuk told jurors that they’re likely to hear evidence that will shock them but asked the jury to not pass judgment until all evidence has been delivered.

A total of 14 people, seven women and seven men, were selected to serve on the jury. Two will be dismissed at the end of the trial to ensure there are 12 people for deliberations.

The first witness is scheduled when court resumes Tuesday morning.

The girls can’t be identified because of a court order.

Due to a publication ban Global News is no longer able to name the victims in this case.

15. 01. 2019
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Saskatoon police want citizens to vote on traffic enforcement targets

Saskatoon police want citizens to vote on traffic enforcement targets

SASKATOON – The Saskatoon Police Service (SPS) is unveiling a new social media initiative Tuesday that will impact where they conduct speed enforcement by allowing residents to vote on potential locations.

“It’s a traffic initiative that will use 桑拿会所’s new polling feature to give the community a chance to voice their input into where we conduct some of our traffic enforcement,” said Kelsie Fraser, a spokesperson for the SPS.

“We’re always looking for ways to improve our service to the community,” she added.

ChangSha Night Net

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    The SPS plans to highlight three locations on 桑拿会所 and allow users a 24-hour window to vote on where the enforcement should occur. The next day, officers will set up in the area and report the results. The initiative can be found using #SlowDownYXE.

    “We need safe streets and to have safe streets you have to have people paying attention, you have to slow down the speeds,” said Staff Sgt. Judy McHarg of the SPS traffic unit.

    READ MORE: Sask. police unit hands out over 12,400 traffic tickets in 2015

    In 2014, Saskatoon police issued 11,330 municipal speeding by-law tickets, according to a year-end report. Officials say the number hasn’t changed much over the years.

    “We’re seeing the same, we hold our own all things traffic tickets,” said McHarg.

    Even with the new effort, McHarg said she didn’t expect the number of speed violations to go down. Instead, the move will help the SPS better engage with the public on the issue of dangerous driving.

    “Truly with this new initiative that we’re planning with the twitter account, I still think that we’re still going to get our same number of tickets that we do on a daily basis,” said McHarg.

    However, enforcement penalty may be the most effective way to curb speeding, according to Carl Kuhnke a transportation infrastructure expert who applauded the SPS move.

    “There’s only so much that design can do to fix that and after that it’s enforcement,” said Kuhnke.

    “They are now going to the citizens and saying, you people are out there driving every day, you know the intersections where everyone’s going 100 instead of 60.”

15. 01. 2019
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Cathy Overton-Clapham returns to provincial Scotties after almost quitting curling

Cathy Overton-Clapham returns to provincial Scotties after almost quitting curling

WINNIPEG —; Cathy Overton-Clapham is back and ready to rock.

“For the first time in a long time I’m really excited to play in the provincials,” said the 2008 world champion.

Overton-Clapham is returning to the Manitoba Scotties following a two-year hiatus. A curling comeback for the 46-year-old Winnipegger after almost calling it quits last season.

ChangSha Night Net

“I’ve been doing it for so long, practicing every day,” said Overton-Clapham. “My kids are busy in their sports. My son is a competitive curler too and I was missing out on his wins so I wanted to be more a part of that.”

But a phone call from Briane Meilleur in the summer peeled that plan. The third and her teammates, Katherine Doerksen and Krysten Karwacki, were stuck after their skip split. So Overton-Clapham decided to slide in and help.

“I knew there was a lot of potential with the girls,” said Overton-Clapham. “I know they’re very tough competitors as well. The fire wasn’t there anymore. I still love to play the game. Playing with the girls has brought that back.”

The Fort Rouge rink competed in four events this year, qualifying for the quarterfinals in the DEKALB Superspiel in Morris back in November. Last month, the team captured a provincials berth in the Winnipeg playdown.

“(The girls) are really excited to play,” said Overton-Clapham. “It’s Katherine’s first time in a Scotties. Her energy and excitement is rubbing off on me.”

In exchange, Overton-Clapham is providing experience to girls nearly half her age.

“I do feel like a mom a lot of the time,” said Overton-Clapham. “There’s been a couple of moments where they’ve mentioned some things and I’ve gone ‘Really? I guess I am that old.’,”

Overton-Clapham plays her first match at the 2016 Manitoba Scotties at 12:15pm Wednesday against the Burntwood Curling Club’s Jennifer Rolles.

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