Fraud, theft and money laundering by OPP union's top brass

Police corruption is a form of police misconduct designed to obtain financial benefits, other personal gain, or career advancement for officers in exchange for not pursuing, or selectively pursuing, an investigation or arrest. One common form of police corruption is soliciting or accepting bribes in exchange for not reporting organized drug or prostitution rings or other illegal activities. Another example is police officers flouting the police code of conduct in order to secure convictions of suspects — for example, through the use of falsified evidence.

OPP union announces ‘significant reform’ after report

Postby Thomas » Wed Sep 09, 2015 9:32 am

OPP union announces ‘significant reform’ after report into its operations

The union for Ontario’s provincial police has announced “significant reform” to its organization following a look at workplace behaviour and the use of union money by some former leaders of the association.

BARRIE, ONT.—The union for Ontario’s provincial police has announced “significant reform” to its organization following a look at workplace behaviour and the use of union money by some former leaders of the association.

The Ontario Provincial Police Association said it commissioned an independent investigation from the law firm Stikeman Elliott LLP in March.

The association launched the probe amid an ongoing investigation by the RCMP, which said Tuesday that no charges have been laid against the former leaders.

The former leaders declined to be interviewed for the Stikeman Elliott report. A lawyer speaking on behalf of the men cited the ongoing RCMP investigation as a reason for that.

The Stikeman Elliott report looks at the spending of the association’s funds by former president Jim Christie, former chief administrative officer Karl Walsh and former vice-president Martin Bain.

The report alleges “the work environment at the OPPA was repeatedly described as ‘toxic,’ ‘fear-based’ and marked by ‘intimidation’ and ‘bullying.’ ”

Walsh, the report said, was “famous for sending ‘tyrannical,’ ‘aggressive,’ ‘confrontational’ or ‘scathing’ emails.”

The report says Bain did not engage in the “same type of ‘tyrannical’ or bullying conduct which was stated to be common from Christie and Walsh.”


The investigation was limited because Christie, Walsh and Bain all declined to be interviewed, the report said.

The union is in a unique situation in that it still represents Christie, Walsh and Bain because they are OPP officers, although all three no longer hold their administrative duties with the association. The union would not offer comment on their behalf and the three couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

The report says Julianna Greenspan, who represents Christie, responded to investigators from Stikeman Elliott and declined a meeting with them on behalf of Christie, Bain and Walsh.

“We trust that your investigation thus far has revealed the inaccuracies that are rife within the (court documents submitted by the RCMP),” Greenspan wrote in a letter dated July 10.

Greenspan responded on behalf of all three on Tuesday night.

“Considering the fact that there is an ongoing RCMP investigation, at this time we are unable to comment on the internal investigative reports prepared by Stikeman Elliott LLP and Hansell LLP at the request of the OPPA,” she wrote in an email to The Canadian Press.

Acting association president Doug Lewis said the union also commissioned a report from Carol Hansell, whom he called a leading expert on governance.

The Hansell report includes recommendations such as implementing a whistleblower policy, a comprehensive code of conduct, governance training and a revision of expense policies.

“There were some examples of some significant bad behaviour and we are changing or preparing to change many of our administrative and governance practices as a result of that,” said Lewis.

Lewis said his biggest disappointment from the Stikeman Elliott report has been the alleged behaviour of its top leaders.

“This has been a very dark chapter for the OPPA and its members,” Lewis wrote in a statement. “We are turning the page.”

http://www.thestar.com/news/queenspark/ ... tions.html

http://news.nationalpost.com/news/canad ... ows-reform

http://www.cp24.com/news/opp-union-anno ... -1.2553953

http://www.therecord.com/news-story/583 ... t-reform-/
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Misspending, bullying allegations revealed in OPPA audit

Postby Thomas » Wed Sep 09, 2015 9:41 am

Three high ranking officials abusing their power, those are the allegations the Ontario Provincial Police Association (OPPA) has been looking into for the past five months.

Former president Jim Christie, former vice president Martin Bain and former CAO Karl Walsh have been accused of racking up questionable charges on company credit cards and being bullies at work.

“I've described this to friends and colleagues as being very similar to a death in that one's first reaction is shock and disbelief,” says acting OPPA president Doug Lewis.

In March, the RCMP raided union offices in Barrie, looking for evidence of theft, fraud, criminal breach of trust, laundering proceeds of crime and fraudulent concealment.

The union asked an outside law firm to conduct an independent report. It shows a breakdown of some of the expenses made on OPPA credit cards.

The report shows recurring charges for gas, clothing, car maintenance, cash advances and restaurant meals. The report also shows that there were charges made in Las Vegas, the Bahamas and Boston.

However, what’s perhaps more disturbing is reports that came from fellow employees. Several people described the work environment as toxic and fear based.

One staff member said it was common for staff and board members to be, "publicly humiliated or berated by Karl Walsh."

Others said Walsh was, "famous for sending tyrannical, aggressive, confrontational or scathing emails" and more reported they felt intimidated and ultimately were, "afraid to question or challenge Christie or Walsh for fear of reprisal."

Lewis says the investigation has revealed cracks in the system.

“Who does one go to when the top brass are the ones you're complaining about?”

A second report gave suggestions on how the organization could change going forward.

Recommendations include:

- Governance training for all officials
- A review of all OPPA bylaws
- A comprehensive code of conduct
- A new anonymous and confidential whistleblower policy

“It's a combination of it's a really dark horrible chapter that we need to put behind us, but it's an opportunity to make the organization so much better.”

http://barrie.ctvnews.ca/misspending-bu ... -1.2553536

http://toronto.ctvnews.ca/independent-p ... -1.2553530

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/nat ... e26270962/
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