RCMP official back in custody after judge revokes bail in secrets case

Cameron Jay Ortis was living with his parents in Abbotsford

A senior RCMP intelligence official charged with breaking Canada’s secrets law was headed back to an Ottawa jail after a judge rescinded his bail Friday.

Under the terms of bail set last month by a justice of the peace, Cameron Jay Ortis was living with his parents in Abbotsford and had to report to police once a week and was forbidden from using any device that connects to the internet.

Ontario Superior Court Justice Marc Labrosse said Friday that Ortis would be returned to custody as a result of a review requested by the Crown.

The reasons for Labrosse’s decision and details of the Crown’s review application, heard last week, are covered by a publication ban.

Ortis, 47, faces charges under the Security of Information Act for allegedly disclosing secrets to an unknown recipient and planning to reveal additional classified information to an unspecified foreign entity.

He faces a total of seven counts under various provisions, dating from as early as Jan. 1, 2015, to Sept. 12 of this year.

“The Crown’s position was always that Mr. Ortis should be detained,” prosecutor Judy Kliewer said following Labrosse’s ruling. “I can’t say anything more about the case right now because of the publication ban, which is in place in order to protect Mr. Ortis’s right to a fair trial.”

RCMP officers were waiting Friday outside the Ortis family condominium in Abbotsford.

READ MORE: Alleged RCMP secret leaker must live with parents in Abbotsford while on bail

“We had to ensure that in the event that Mr. Ortis was detained, that there were plans in place to ensure that he was remanded into custody immediately, and we did that,” Kliewer said.

Ian Carter, a lawyer for Ortis, expressed disappointment after Friday’s hearing.

“We thought that the justice of the peace’s decision was reasonable and the correct one,” he said.

The defence wants to see more of the Crown’s case against Ortis, Carter added.

“Basically we need to get more disclosure, we don’t have all the disclosure yet to analyze the case and begin preparation for defending him against these charges.”

Kliewer said the Crown was ”continuing with the disclosure process” and would soon move to set trial dates.

Unlike the case for many criminal offences, Ortis had the burden of demonstrating why he should be freed on bail while he awaits trial on the secrets-law charges.

The bail conditions established last month required that Ortis and his parents, who were acting as sureties, each post a $125,000 bond.

One of his parents was to be in the B.C. residence with him at all times and accompany him on outings.

All phones, computers and tablets in the home were to be password-protected and locked away when not in the possession of Ortis’ parents.

In addition, Ortis could not attend any place that had public internet access, was forbidden from possessing weapons and was required to surrender his passport to authorities.

The Security of Information Act, passed following the 9/11 attacks on the United States, is intended to safeguard sensitive government secrets. Charges have been rare but Jeffrey Paul Delisle, a naval officer who gave classified material to Russia, pleaded guilty to offences under the act in 2012.

RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki has said the allegations against Ortis are unsettling, noting that as director general of the force’s National Intelligence Co-ordination Centre, he had access to information from domestic and international allies.

Lucki told a news conference in September that investigators came across documents during a joint investigation with the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation that led the Mounties to believe there could be some kind of “internal corruption.”

Jim Bronskill , The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Port Hardy RCMP discuss reconciliation with First Nations

The RCMP “want to be emotionally respectful of the past while still trying to uphold the laws.”

VIDEO: Wounded Warrior Run leaves Port Hardy on eight-day trek down island

The team’s fundraising goal this year is $250,000, which is double last year’s goal.

Claims already being staked after GeoScience BC report released

In the first 15 days following the report, a total of 34 new claims were staked.

Bradshaw’s Photo Highlight: Waulkwass River

A kingfisher and some trumpeter swans came by close enough to get a few shots.

Port Hardy RCMP investigating drug offences

Both vehicle occupants may face future charges related to the suspected drugs and cash.

B.C. residents in Wet’suwet’en territory have right to police presence: Public Safety Minister

Nevertheless, Bill Blair said officials remain ‘very anxious’ for the barricades to come down

UPDATE: Boy, 5, will donate organs after crash that killed father, son on B.C. highway

Mike Cochlin and sons Liam and Quinn were travelling on Highway 5A

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs to meet today with federal and B.C. governments

Nationwide rail and road blockades have been popping up for weeks

Chinatowns across Canada report drop in business due to new coronavirus fears

Around the world, about 81,000 people have become ill with the virus

Endangered butterfly species to be reintroduced to Hornby Island

Hornby Island is about to play a major role in the saving… Continue reading

VIDEO: Province promotes ‘lifting each other up’ on 13th annual Pink Shirt Day

Students, MLAs, community members gathered at B.C. Parliament Buildings Wednesday

Prepare for new coronavirus like an emergency, health minister advises

About 81,000 people around the world have now become ill with COVID-19

Winnipeg police investigating graffiti on RCMP and other buildings

Manitoba Justice Minister Cliff Cullen denounced the vandalism

B.C. seniors’ watchdog calls for better oversight after recent problems at Retirement Concepts care homes

‘There is no financial incentive right now to be a good operator’ - Isobel Mackenzie

Most Read