TS'PETEN DEFENCE COMMITTEE
174-1472 Commercial Drive, Vancouver, Salish Territory, V5L 3X9
Phone: (604) 322-7934, Fax: (604) 323-0224
February 17, 1997
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
VANCOUVER, Salish Territory -- The Ts'peten Defence Committee announced today that the arrival of internationally renowned lawyer Dr. Bruce Clark to British Columbia is in response to a protocol offered by the B.C. court as confirmed in a letter from Ray Hall, a B.C. Regional Crown Counsel, dated November 27, 1996 (fax copy available).
Dr. Bruce Clark will travel from Robinsonville, New Brunswick, and arrive in Vancouver on February 18, at 11:55 a.m. Pacific Time on Canadian Airlines flight CA911, at which point he will meet his legal agent, Mr. Manuel A. Azevedo. Dr. Clark will then seek "early hearing dates of all matters."
"It is oblivious that Dr. Clark is anxious to get into B.C. court and deal with the charges if the Crown wants to proceed with those charges. It is clear that Dr. Clark is arriving as per his verbal agreement with Crown Counsel Ray Hall, which has been confirmed in writing," said Splitting The Sky, a Ts'peten Defence Committee spokesperson.
The outstanding bench warrant for Dr. Clark, which originally was Canada wide, now only applies to British Columbia.
The trial of Mr. Jones Ignace and other defendants continues in Surrey, B.C.
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For more information contact:
Ts'peten Defence Committee spokespersons:Documents available by fax:Splitting The SkyGustafsen Lake Legal Team:
Phone/fax: (604) 543-9661
Phone: (604) 251-4949Manuel Azevedo
Fax: (604) 687-0241
Letter from Dr. Bruce Clark to J. Ray Hall, dated November 4, 1996 (2 pages)
Letter from J. Ray Hall to Dr. Bruce Clark, dated November 27, 1996 (1 page)
Letter from Dr. Bruce Clark to J. Ray Hall, dated February 13, 1997 (1 page)
The controversial lawyer who first represented defendants in the Gustafsen Lake standoff trial says he will return to Vancouver soon, despite two warrants for his arrest.
And if Bruce Clark is not allowed to participate in court proceedings, native supporters say they will release information damaging to the NDP.
Clark has been in self-imposed exile since a September 1995 courtroom outburst in which he threw a bundle of papers at a judge, saying the BC Supreme Court had no jurisdiction over natives.
Clark left the country shortly afterward to avoid a jail term for assaulting a police officer and contempt of court. Now, he says, he is ready to come back to BC in time for Wednesday's opening defense arguments.
The Ts'peten Defense Committee said it is worried for Clark's safety in the light of an alleged smear campaign against the Gustafsen Lake protesters. Clark offered to apologize for his outburst in a letter to the Attorney General's office dated Feb.13.
"My offer remains to apologize, short of acknowledging any criminal intent to show contempt," he wrote.