Thursday, February 20, 1997, 2000 hr PST
BC authorities moved quickly today to criminalize international Native Rights lawyer and legal scholar Dr. Bruce Clark. Clark was brought before Provincial Court Judge Nicholas Friesen in 100 Mile House, to face trumped up charges of assaulting a police officer, and contempt of Court. The charges arose when the Court attempted to deny Clark access to a hearing involving his clients, Gustafsen Lake Shuswap traditionalists and supporters that had recently been arrested following a month long armed siege by the largest RCMP and Army operation in Canadian history. On September 15, 1995, Clark was assaulted by RCMP officers after Judge Friesen, refused to hear him, or permit him access to his clients. He was then charged with contempt of Court and assaulting a police officer. On the instructions of his clients he fled into exile to continue pursuing legal remedies in the international arena. He had returned to BC after assurances that the outstanding matters would be dealt with by arranging dates for a hearing, that would also permit him to appear for the defence case in the Gustafsen Lake Trial. The defence case began Wednesday. On Tuesday Clark was arrested by RCMP and returned to Judge Friesen's Court.
Even by BC standards it was a bizarre trial. There was no arraignment. Judge Friesen sat on his own contempt charge, acting effectively as both Prosecutor and Judge. Not surprisingly, the Judge found in favor of his own prosecution. Clark was found to be 'profoundly in contempt'.
Bruce Clark, forced to act as both accused and defence counsel - apologized for the "kangaroo Court" remark but was unable to recant his legal opinion on Judge Friesen's lack of jurisdiction. Friesen pronounced "a three hundred year old law" as not relevant. Judge Friesen will pronounce sentence tomorrow afternoon, when he will also deal with the alleged assault. Meanwhile Gustafsen Lake defenders in Court in Surrey began the defence case after more than 100 days of crown prosecution, with legal aid lawyers that are no longer being paid (the Attorney General has decided in his wisdom that further necessary funds are not available). The transparent and outrageous attempt by BC's NDP government to evade the issue of it's own demonstrable fraud and constitutional treason would be hilarious were it not fraught with sinister consequences for those indigenous traditionalists, supporters and obviously Bruce Clark who remains along with the Shuswap elder Wolverine, his client, a prisoner of Canadian democracy. These latest events prove the wisdom of the due process right of the independent, impartial, third party tribunal sought by the Defenders.
February 20, 1997, 0600hr PST
RCMP will remove arrested indigenous rights lawyer and legal scholar Dr. Bruce Clark to Williams Lake to appear before Provincial Court Judge Nicholas Friesen today. There, away from the scrutiny of supporters and others concerned with the lawyer's safety in light of RCMP death threats, Clark, 52, will appear before the same judge that ordered his arrest, presided over his assault, and ordered him confined for psychiatric examination in 1995, in an attempt by BC's legal and political establishment to suppress legal arguments relating to government corruption and fraud respecting the attack and subsequent month long siege of the Ts'peten Sundance grounds.
It now appears that the arrest of Clark was a "set up". Sources inside the BC Attorney-General's ministry have confirmed that:
"The political people had Clark on the top of their shit list. They overruled Crown Counsel, who had assumed that dates would be set and arrangements made in a normal civilized fashion."There is growing concern over the safety of Dr. Clark especially in light of his transfer to Judge Friesen's jurisdiction. In addition, Clark will be within the RCMP region commanded by Superintendent Len Olfert. An RCMP "training tape" shown to the jury in the Gustafsen Lake trial included a frightening disclosure by Olfert's Chief negotiator RCMP Sgt. Dennis Ryan that his commander wanted to "kill this Clark and smear the prick and everyone with him."
Meanwhile in BC Supreme Court in Surrey, the provisional defence began their case before Justice Bruce Josephson, who has consistently refused to entertain jurisdictional issues raised by the Shuswap elder Wolverine and the other defendants who have been denied their counsel of choice Bruce Clark. Denial of counsel of choice is a violation of the international UN Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
The BC Judiciary, with its grotesque conflicts of interest and its domination by resource based national and international law partnerships who also control the bench, bar and law society , is notoriously corrupt. One California judge, William Newsome, was moved to comment in print during the Clayoquot Sound anti-logging campaign that the conflicts "under our laws would be criminal...BC under the NDP is run along lines that would bring great credit to the Sicilian Mafia."
The attempts by the BC authorities to assassinate the truth were plainly visible during the siege of Gustafsen Lake. All sectors of the BC establishment participated. This included the various NDP mafias in Academia that contributed "expert" opinions like Paul Tennant, Jack Woodward, Frank Cassidy and Hamar Foster and other members of the "Indian Industry." The near total failure of the BC Human Rights and Civil Liberties agencies to protest the government atrocities and violations documented by numerous international observers must also sadly be noted. Again the NDP mafia that controls these bodies ensured their silence. Two of the primary political managers of the Gustafsen Lake siege, the Attorney General Ujjal Dosanjh and his deputy Stephen Owen, have extensive networks in the Human Rights arena. Owen has worked as counsel for Amnesty International. Maureen Maloney, former Dean of the law school at the University of Victoria and an official in Dosanjh's Ministry as well as the current partner of NDP Finance Minister Andrew Petter, was also involved in "getting the political people in line" according to the briefing notes of senior RCMP personnel. The media offensive against the Sundancers and their lawyer Bruce Clark was orchestrated by RCMP media liaison Peter Montague. Montague was heard to state on RCMP videotape recorded at the time of the standoff during a planning meeting of the RCMP's "smear and disinformation campaign" that "smear campaigns" were his "specialty."
Naturally , media has treated the defendants' revelations as "conspiracy theories", and the "embarrassing" on camera statements by RCMP as "only joking." Montague's fondly expressed hope that "we could have ourselves some dead fucking terrorists" and moments later: "not that lucky" have a distinctly sinister and deadly serious implication -- backed up as they were with land mines, 14 ton Armoured Personnel Carriers, 50 calibre browning machine guns, 20,000 rounds of internationally prohibited hollow-point ammunition, and the participation of the Canadian Army. This was the first time in Canadian history the army was used in a civilian situation without a review by either Parliament or the legislature.
And what of the preparations of JTF2, Joint Task Force Two, the elite commando unit that was preparing a "final solution"? No, this was not a joke. Nor was it a joke to see the CBC, "Canada's pride", produce a "psy-ops" broadcast into the besieged camp, designed to provoke the Sundancers and manufacture consent for a lethal RCMP raid. What of the tobacco presented by Adrienne Arsenault of CBC as a "goodwill" gesture -- and the ten or so hours of interviews that she asked for to tell "your side?" How come they never played Adrienne? George Garrett of CKNW -- there you are on video big as life handing your interview with Bruce Clark over to Montague and the instructor from the FBI training Academy that also 'consulted' at Waco. There you are, promising that you and BCTV would not release the interviews with Clark until the RCMP said so. Ts'peten Defence Committee member Bill Lightbown was present when the media were taken into a boardroom and told "that everything would be vetted by the RCMP".
The smear campaign hasn't stopped: "Clark's Brucing for a fight"; "Eccentric lawyer Bruce Clark"; "he'll get some tight metal bracelets to match his steel rimmed spectacles." And once again ad infinitum ad nauseum "whose shaved head and flamboyant space age eyeglasses"; "fresh from reclaiming the Statue of Liberty for New York Indians". Suzanne Fournier of "The Province" - have you ever been the object of political persecution? Have you ever been dragged before the cameras of the national media in manacles and leg irons? Did you ever think that indigenous people really do have land rights? As laughable as it may seem Suzanne, to someone like yourself trying so desperately to outdo Barbara Mclintock in racist arrogance and sneering contempt - yes, Ellis Island is Mohegan land. And the independent, international, impartial tribunal to adjudicate land disputes between the Native nation and the colony, which the Mohegans successfully achieved in 1704 -- was all that the Gustafsen Lake people and their lawyer were asking for in 1995 and still today in 1997. Not a bogus and fraudulent BC Treaty Commission presided over by a Chief Commissioner that comes straight from a senior partnership in the law firm Davis and Company, and a directorship of logging multinational Daishowa -- accused by the World Council of Churches, as guilty of genocide for clearcutting the life out of the Lubicon Cree.
Then there are the collaborating Indians. Ovide Mercredi - you accused the Sundancers of "attempted murder". You refused to sign and support a simple petition for a legal due process right. Why, now that you know the shooting incident never took place, and you yourself have committed the government sponsored Assembly of First Nations to "sovereignty" and "international action," why don't you say where you got the idea from? Can it be that you fear your own people's increasing empowerment and action on the international stage. Have your masters pointed you internationally to preempt these initiatives - or is it again just a chance to cash in?
Are you too part of the smear and misinformation campaign? You said to the students of Red River College, Winnipeg:
"In Gustafsen Lake last year, no university students were there, no college students, no leaders. [wrong] There was no one there who had a job or a future. [wrong] Gustafsen was Native people who had given up on the system or had seen the system give up on them. They were a group of people frustrated to the point where they had no loyalty to anyone, no loyalties even to their own people." [wrong] (Windspeaker, April 1996)And what about your future Ovide?
Headline: "Weary Mercredi would like to represent Canada abroad".During the standoff, the Shuswap elder Wolverine told Mercredi that he could be "a national Indian hero, or a national Indian disgrace." It would appear he chose the latter. What about the others like Len Marchand, the native senator who personally phoned the RCMP and urged them to go in?
Following text: "There are tiny lines around Ovide Mercredi's dark eyes and deeper ones across his forehead. Worn down from trying to improve the lot of Canada's aboriginal people, under attack from some of them, Mercredi says he won't run for a third term as national chief. But he does have a second career in mind. "I'd like to be an ambassador somewhere," he says "somewhere like Australia or New Zealand where they speak English". (Wendy Cox - The Canadian Press, June 11, 1995)
And what of the rest of us? Was it worth it Canada? Well, we have spent 5, 6, 7 million dollars on the largest RCMP/military operation in Canadian history. We now have one of the longest and costliest trials in our history - all kinds of records. One Canadian Forces officer testified that due to the large discharge including those from the army C7 automatic rifles, this was the largest belligerent ground action by Canadian land forces since the Korean War.
That's why the RCMP had the American "owner" of the half million acre ranch come in with a skidder and clearcut, destroying the evidence of swaths cut through the trees by bullets, and then invited the local Department of Indian Affairs "Chiefs" to rip down the sacred Sundance arbour and burn it.
And so Bruce Clark returns to 100 Mile House in chains and great danger.
"...Yet when, eventually they were arrested by the police I was denied access to them and they to me on the grounds that they had other lawyers [provided by the very Tribal Council against whom they were resisting]. The police ushered in legal aid duty counsel to talk to my clients about getting immediate bail as soon as they were arrested and then used that as a pretext for blocking the lawyer-client relationship upon which the jurisdiction issue depends for its presentation and argument. Not only was I denied access to my clients in their cells but my access to the courtroom in which my clients were being arraigned after their arrest physically was blocked by police. I forced my way in. When I informed the presiding judge that I was acting he said I had been dismissed and replaced by other counsel, but refused to allow the clients into the courtroom to ask them, on the record, who was acting for them. When I filed my clients' written motion objecting to jurisdiction and advised the judge of the treasonable, fraudulent and genocidal character of his jurisdictional assumption, he cited me for contempt, and I was jumped from behind and pressed to the floor by a scrum of police officers, who then charged me with assault. I was held in custody over the weekend and subjected to deprivation of sleep for two nights [an acknowledged form of torture - accomplished by a police scanner placed just outside his cell]. I was paraded past the national media reporters and taken in leg irons as well as hand cuffs, like some Silence-of-the-Lambs psychotic killer, before the same judge. He then remanded me in custody to a forensic psychiatric hospital on the basis of his own preliminary diagnosis that I was suffering from a "paranoid mental disorder" for having raised my clients' legal objection to his jurisdiction. The resulting psychiatric report established that the judge's diagnosis was insupportable; that there was no clinical basis whatsoever for an inference of paranoia or any other mental disorder. I was released. I became an exile on my clients' adamant instructions that I not return to that judge's court room and, in consequence, incarceration. When I failed to appear at the next court date that judge ordered my arrest.Letter from Bruce Clark to Ray Hall, November 4, 1996:
...A person is not a fugitive from justice in circumstances where there is no prospect of justice. There is no prospect of justice in circumstances where judges refuse to do their minimal duty to at least read the law. There is no prospect that judges will read the law where to do so is tantamount to accepting a share of culpability for the historic and ongoing crimes of treason, fraud and genocide. From this perspective I am not a fugitive from justice, but rather for justice. If I thought that my being in jail, even indefinitely, would contribute to the rehabilitation of the justice system I would not hesitate to attempt to run the gauntlet. But everyone says that I must stay out of jail so as to be able to work and write more effectively in the long range interest of upholding the rule of law's preclusion of genocide in the Americas. I have to admit Verna, that I just do not know any more what to do. Everything that is happening seems to me to be impossible that it is happening in Canada. Yet it is happening to me. And it had been happening to the Indian people for a very long time. The criminalization of Indian resistance, even when it entails the bringing forward by them of existing law, is such a deeply entrenched modus operandi in the judicial genocide of indigenous people as to seem normal and irremediable. Yet we must remedy it. For not to resist genocide, when you know as we do that it exists and can not like the judges pretend not to see it, is to condone the genocide. Your stand upon principle is of importance to your people, to the indigenous people of the rest of Canada who may occupy yet unsurrendered Indian territory, to the Indians of the United States in similar positions, and to the natives of every other country in the Americas and around the world whether it be East Timor or Nigeria."
(Full text of this document available online at http://kafka.uvic.ca/~vipirg/SISIS/clark/verna1.html)
Ray HallThe first day of the defence case has come and gone. Both Wolverine and Dr. Clark are incarcerated for their defence of the rule of law. Wolverine, presently without counsel of choice, has been consistently refused bail since just after the standoff concluded. He recently turned 65 - in jail. He and others will continue to seek the justice that has thus far been denied. They continue to hope that you will join them in this search. If you already have...welcome.
Regional Crown Counsel
Ministry of the Attorney General
Plaza 400 - Room 462
1011 4th Avenue
Prince George, British Columbia
Canada V2L 3H9
Phone: (250) 565-6087
Fax: (250) 565-6056
Re: R v. Bruce Clark, Contempt and Assault
On October 18, 1995 Judge Friesen stated in court that the contempt charge might have been withdrawn had I chosen to apologize and accept the jurisdiction of the court. I could not and can not accept the jurisdiction of the court vis-a-vis my native clients. But I could do so for myself, qua non-native person. I could also apologize for using the term "kangaroo court." As for the alleged assaults my position can only be that the court record is clear that the police assault upon me preceded the Judge's contempt citation, and indeed overwhelmed the impression of it upon me and that therefore my resistance legitimately was in self defence in my mind. The events began and ended in seconds. Would an acceptance of jurisdiction and an apology in the above terms be sufficient relative to the withdrawal of the above charges?
Assuming not, the theory of defence will continue to be that at all material times I was acting as lawyer for aboriginal people who were defending against the imposition upon their people of treason, fraud and genocide, and therefore I do shelter under the legal status of my principals, and that the court jurisdiction issue therefore is the crux of the matter. I will wish to argue that everything that I said or did was justified by the magnitude of the crimes that I was attempting to apprehend by attempting to inform the court of the law precluding and rendering criminal its assumption of jurisdiction. The submission will be the Judge was in communication with the police outside the courtroom and did thereby inappropriately gather impressions concerning me that he took with him into the courtroom. My position is that there was in effect a conspiracy between the Judge and the police - to perfect the crimes in progress of judicial misprision of treason and fraud and complicity in genocide-- by suppressing me as the natives' representative, since, from all that is apparent, I am the only lawyer ready, willing and able to prove those crimes.
In light of that theory of the defence, it is apparent that the trial will depend primarily upon the availability of witnesses. I will have to call Judge Friesen as a witness relative to his direct and indirect communications with the police. I will have to call Sergeants Ryan and Hartl, the police negotiators. And the videos of my interviews with them in the 100 Mile House Police trailer will have to be viewed. These I believe will make apparent that the police expressly and explicitly undertook to ensure that I would have total access to and be representing my clients immediately following their arrests. The events of the night of September 14th and the morning of the 15th establish how utterly and unconscionably that police undertaking was breached. I do not know the name of the police officer on duty at the 100 Mile House Detachment on the night of September 14 who refused me access to my clients on the ground they had other lawyers, just because the police had shown in duty counsel to talk about bail. Nor do I know the name of the officers who communicated this misleading information to Judge Friesen. But I will have to call the Commissioner of the RCMP as to his instructions from the Prime Minister or other high officials relative to the frustration of the same remedy. Sergeant Martin Sarich will be necessary relative to my letter to him dated August 8, 1995. I will have also to call the Gustafsen Lake defenders as to who was really acting for them on September 15, 1995 when Judge Friesen refused to allow them into the court to put the question to them whether it was me.
I do not have access to the police schedules but presumably you do. Therefore, it seems to me best that you pick a convenient trial date to accommodate the police witnesses, and then let me know what it is. I think Vancouver would be a better venue than elsewhere, but I am content to leave that to your discretion. I will present the defence at the time and place so designated for the trial.
"The genocide of which Dr. Clark speaks is real...we are sympathetic moreover to his assertion that the Courts have been unwilling to listen to his argument." - Upper Canada Law Society, June 19,1996DEFEND DR BRUCE CLARK - DEFEND WOLVERINE - DEFEND THE TS'PETEN DEFENDERS
"Have you no sense of judicial ethics or common decency?...You give the appearance of an arrogant and hateful tyrant determined to humiliate Indians and destroy the professional and personal reputation and the livelihood of their lawyer. Do you expect Indian peoples to believe they can receive justice in your court? And where will Indians obtain independent, courageous and effective counsel to represent them in your court?" - Former US Attorney-General Ramsey Clark to Judge Nicholas Friesen, Sept. 26, 1995
"And Mr. Justice Josephson of the BC Supreme Court has said he doesn't want to hear Mr. Clark's argument at the Gustafsen trial." Globe and Mail, Feb.19, 1997