Corrections’ officer sentenced for drug trafficking

For the first time in B.C. history, a provincial corrections’ officer has been convicted of drug trafficking while on duty.

Roger Moore, a 35-year-old guard with seven years experience, was sentenced Friday to four years in jail in connection with an incident in 2006 in which he smuggled steroids, pot and ecstasy into the North Fraser Pretrial Centre – the largest such facility in the province – for sale to inmates.

“Mr. Moore’s actions stand in stark contrast to the professionalism displayed by our corrections’ officers every day,” Marnie Mayhew, a spokeswoman for B.C. Corrections said in an interview. “This case represents the isolated actions of one individual.” Continue reading

Winnebago County Corrections officer charged with DUI


Jake A. Roberts, a Winnebago County Corrections officer, was arrested Wednesday in Roscoe, said Sheriff Richard Meyers. Roberts was charged with driving under the influence. His arraignment is scheduled for May 28.

The Winnebago County state’s attorney will handle Roberts’ case, Meyers said. Roberts’ arrest, in regards to his employment, will be a personnel matter within the county, Meyers said.


2 correctional officers charged in bar fight

Two provincial corrections officers have been charged with assault causing bodily harm in connection with a fight at a downtown Charlottetown bar.

Michael Andrew Irwin, 29, of Stratford and Nathan Kevin Praught, 22, of Summerside were charged Monday following the incident at St. James Gate on Dec. 13. Both men work at the P.E.I. correctional centre at Sleepy Hollow outside Charlottetown. Continue reading

Guard pleads not guilty in inmate beating case

A guard who has already testified in court that he “lost it” when he punched a prisoner at the St. John’s lockup last March is pleading not guilty in his own assault trial.

Guards Michael Hanlon and Wayne Carrigan were charged after Christopher Mahon appeared in court last March with raccoon-like bruises around his eyes. Continue reading

Correctional officer charged with beating inmate opting to wait for outcome of other officer’s trial

One of two correction officers accused with assaulting an inmate at the St. John’s Lockup in March is not making any decisions about his case just yet.
The case of Wayne Patrick Carrigan was called in provincial court in St. John’s Tuesday.
The 51-year-old, who is charged with assault causing bodily harm, was not in court. Instead, he was represented by lawyer Kim Horwood, who was filling in for Mark Rogers.
When the case was last called in court on Sept. 29, Rogers had told Judge Robert Hyslop that Carrigan was considering concluding his matter by way of speedy disposition, meaning he may plead guilty.
On Tuesday, however, Crown prosecutor Nick Westera told the judge that in recent discussions with Rogers, the defence lawyer told him that Carrigan wanted to wait and see what happens in the case involving the other correctional officer charged in the alleged incident.
The trial for Michael Gerard Hanlon, 45 — who is also charged with assault causing bodily harm — is scheduled to resume in December.
Hyslop agreed to put Carrigan’s matter over until Jan. 9 for a status update.
Carrigan and Hanlon are accused of assaulting Christopher Mahon at the St. John’s Lockup on March 23.
Mahon alleges the correctional officers brutally attacked him, punching him repeatedly following his arrest for allegedly assaulting his brother the night before.
Mahon, meanwhile was in another courtroom Tuesday, to face charges of assault on a police officer. He is also charged with assaulting Carrigan and Hanlon. He’s scheduled to be in court to answer to those charges Nov. 12.


corrections staff suspended after accused robber released

John Albert William Dumont, 29, is considered dangerous, the RCMP said Friday. John Albert William Dumont, 29, is considered dangerous, the RCMP said Friday. (RCMP) A top government official and two corrections workers have been suspended after a man considered dangerous to the public — who was supposed to be in custody on a robbery charge — was released by mistake.

Corrections, Public Safety and Policing Minister Darryl Hickie confirmed the correctional worker suspensions on Friday after learning that John Albert William Dumont, 29, was on the loose.

Later in the day, he said his deputy minister, Terry Coleman, had also been suspended. All three will be paid while the case is under investigation.

Hickie indicated that he was furious that the public wasn’t informed after the mistake was made.

“Public safety’s the most important thing we have here,” he said. “It sure makes me wonder who is running the ship over there.”

The night before, the ministry issued an alert, asking the public to keep an eye out for Dumont.

Dumont had been on remand at the Regina Correctional Centre. He appeared in court Wednesday where he was acquitted of a Regina robbery charge.

After that he was released.

But he was supposed to have been sent back to jail to await a court date on another robbery charge, in Prince Albert.

RCMP said they weren’t notified until 4 p.m. Thursday — a full day after Dumont was released.

The release of the prisoner follows security concerns that arose after six other prisoners escaped from the jail during the summer.

Hickie vowed then that the public would learn of such events sooner.

On Friday, he wondered aloud what happened to that directive.

“By not following my policy, is there a disregard for my policy and me as a minister?” Hickie said.

The RCMP is asking for the public’s help in finding Dumont, but they say he is dangerous, and people should not approach him.

They say he has lived in Balcarres, the File Hills area, and in Prince Albert.


Fired, suspended guards used excessive force on prisoner: Clarke

Nova Scotia’s justice minister is standing behind a decision to fire three jail guards and suspend nine others.

Cecil Clarke said the disciplinary action was a result of a fight with an inmate in August at the Central Nova Scotia Correctional Facility in Dartmouth.

Nine guards were struggling with a prisoner, but three others jumped into the fray, he said.

“This is about a specific incident with an inmate and the way staff have interacted with that inmate using excessive force and affecting him to the point of injury,” Clarke said Friday. “It is a very serious matter and it’s not acceptable.”

The correctional officers were notified this week.

The union representing jail guards claims that authorities are punishing those who took part in work action over another matter.

The Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union suggests two guards were fired because they refused to escort prisoners in a dispute over workplace safety earlier this year.

“We haven’t been witness to the tapes, but based on speaking to the officers and what they’ve told me and understanding a bit about how the institution is run, it just seems very suspicious that it’s the same people,” said Joan Jessome, president of the NSGEU.

But Clarke dismisses that claim.

“The two are not related in any way,” he said.

Fred Honsberger, head of the province’s correctional system, described the inmate’s injuries as serious but not life-threatening.

He said the incident happened after the inmate assaulted a guard, but he called it “unnecessary and inappropriate.”

The disciplinary action was justified, Honsberger said, adding it’s unprecedented in his 33 years experience.

“It was all based on what was observed on the video, and it’s very defensible, in our view,” said Honsberger.


Former Jail Guard Sentenced To 15 Months For Role In Online Child Porn

A former jail guard was handed a 15-month sentence Wednesday for his participation in what Justice David McCombs called an “an unsettling and repugnant subculture” of online pornographers.

Former Jail Guard Sentenced To 15 Months For Role In Online Child Porn

The judge called the chats and images that Matthew Hughes was accused of sharing and participating in, “chilling and unspeakable”, and said his most heinous crime was encouraging a woman to sexually assault her own grandchild so he could watch on a web-cam. The woman, a resident of the United States, followed through and was later convicted and jailed for her actions.

A doctor said during the trial that Hughes was not a pedophile, but had an erotic interest in children.

His sentence includes three years probation and he can’t be around children for the next 10 years.

He’s also been placed on the sexual offender registry for the next 10 years and has been forbidden from using the internet, or cell phones.

Hughes spent 51 days in pretrial custody, during which he claims he was forced to drink toilet water and wasn’t allowed to shower.  His attorney Barry Goldman told the judge he has concerns for his safety while incarcerated.

Toronto police, corrections officers arrested in connection with marijuana grow-ops

Two Toronto police officers and three corrections officers were some of the 23 people arrested Thursday on suspicion of being involved with “a very elaborate criminal organization” that grew and sold marijuana and other drugs.

During a news conference Thursday, Toronto police Chief William Blair said an investigation in February into marijuana grow-ops in neighbouring York Region uncovered evidence that linked a Toronto constable to one of the residences under investigation.

Subsequent investigations led to allegations that a second member of the Toronto Police Service and three corrections officers were also involved in the “criminal enterprise, the primary purpose of which was the production and distribution of marijuana, the distribution of other drugs, and the laundering of the proceeds of their criminal enterprise,” Blair said.

Of 23 people arrested Thursday, 20 have been charged, including one young offender.

Kevin Bourne and Patrick Lee, who have served with the Toronto police for nine and eight years respectively, are in custody. They are expected to appear in a Newmarket court on Friday.

“The conduct alleged by these two individual officers, and quite frankly also by those corrections officers that are accused in today’s investigation, [means] that trust is challenged and we are very disappointed,” Blair said.

In addition to the arrests, investigators seized nearly eight kilograms of marijuana and $60,000 in cash during the raids Thursday, as well as three houses and five vehicles.

Superintendent James Ramer said the enterprise was run by “a very elaborate criminal organization” that was allegedly in operation for about two years and sold ecstasy and steroids as well as marijuana.

“It’s certainly disappointing to find out that you have two of your own members involved, but it’s work that needs to be done. We have to ensure the public trust and public confidence,” Ramer said.

The investigation continues.


Surveillance video shows B.C. prison guard helping inmate escape

VANCOUVER (CBC) – A sentencing hearing for a former B.C. prison guard who helped an inmate escape has been held over until August.

A sentencing hearing for a former B.C. prison guard who helped an inmate escape has been held over until August.

Edwin Ticne, 35, pleaded guilty in April to charges of obstruction of justice and accepting a bride. He helped Omid Tahvili walk out of the maximum-security North Fraser Pretrial Centre in Port Coquitlam on Nov. 15, 2007.

 On Wednesday, the Crown asked for a prison term of up to 10 years for Ticne, who was a corrections officer for more than a decade.

 A surveillance video released by B.C. Corrections showed Tahvili, who was wearing a janitor’s uniform, following Ticne as they pass through four security-controlled doors.

 At the time of his escape, Tahvili was awaiting a sentencing hearing after being convicted of kidnapping, sexual assault, unlawful confinement, uttering threats and causing bodily harm for which he was eventually sentenced to 11 years in prison.

 Police allege that Tahvili has gang ties in the Lower Mainland.



A B.C. prison guard who helped a high-profile convict escape was sentenced to three years and three months in jail Friday afternoon.

Edwin Ticne, 35, pleaded guilty in April to obstruction of justice and accepting a bribe in connection with Omid Tahvilli’s escape from the North Fraser Pretrial Centre in Port Coquitlam last November.

Before he was sentenced on Friday, Ticne apologized for helping Tahvilli dress up as a janitor and walk out the front door of the high-security prison.

Surveillance video from the night of the escape showed Ticne leading Tahvilli, an alleged Iranian-Canadian gang leader, through four security gates to freedom.

At the sentencing hearing Friday, Ticne, dressed in a black suit, looked solemn as he waved goodbye to a small group of family and friends in the New Westminster courtroom.

After Judge Peter Leask sentenced Ticne, he acknowledged the time in prison will be hard for the former B.C. corrections officer, and wished him good luck.

The judge said he took into account a psychiatrist’s report that Ticne was in the midst of a major depressive episode at the time of the escape.

The psychiatrist said Ticne was a pathological gambler who had problems with alcohol and suffered stress from work and his family.

The judge also said he believed Ticne did not receive the money Tahvilli had promised.

Crown asked for 5 to 10 years

But Leask also read from a victim impact statement that stated many guards at the North Fraser Pretrial Centre felt angry and betrayed by the escape.

Reg Harris, Ticne’s lawyer, had asked for a sentence of two to three years, arguing Tahvilli was a sophisticated manipulator who exploited a weakness in his client.

Crown council had asked for a sentence of five to 10 years.

Before the sentencing hearing began, the judge was told that Tahvilli had contacted police this week, saying he is in Toronto and would like to negotiate a return to B.C.

At the time of his escape, Tahvilli was awaiting sentencing after being convicted of kidnapping, sexual assault, unlawful confinement, uttering threats and causing bodily harm. He was eventually sentenced to 11 years in prison.

The escape was the first in the history of the prison, which first opened in 2001. Earlier this week, a second prisoner escaped from the high-security prison by posing as another prisoner, who was due to be released.