Canadian Judicial Council completes its review of complaints against Justice Peter Leask

    OTTAWA, Sept. 20 /CNW Telbec/ - The Canadian Judicial Council has
announced today the results of its review of complaints made against the
Honourable Peter Leask of the Supreme Court of British Columbia. Justice Leask
was the subject of complaints as a result of his use of coarse language during
proceedings in March 2007.
    The complaints against Justice Leask were reviewed by the Honourable
Richard J. Scott, Chief Justice of Manitoba and Chairperson of the Judicial
Conduct Committee of Council. Chief Justice Scott sought and reviewed comments
from Justice Leask in this matter. Justice Leask indicated that he is aware
that his use of language was improper, and pointed out that he immediately
made a formal public apology to convey his genuine regret about the incident.
    Upon a review of the entire matter, including the publicly available
record, Chief Justice Scott found that Justice Leask's use of language at
certain times during the trial of Regina v. Glen Hehn was indeed improper and
tarnished the reputation of the Court and the judiciary. Chief Justice Scott
formally expressed his concern to Justice Leask with regard to the gravity of
his actions. He advised Justice Leask that his language was offensive, that it
brought discredit on the judiciary and showed disrespect toward the Court. He
pointed out that judges have an obligation to foster, at all times, respect
for the public and the institution of the Court, and to ensure that decorum is
maintained in the courtroom. Chief Justice Scott reminded Justice Leask that
all judges must lead by example in this regard.
    However, in light of the judge's clear and unambiguous apology, his
recognition that his use of coarse language was improper, and his commitment
that such actions would not be repeated in future, Chief Justice Scott
concluded that the matter need not be considered further. The file is
therefore being closed and the complainants advised accordingly. A copy of the
letter to the complainants is available on the Council's website at:
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    General information about the Canadian Judicial Council and the
complaints process can also be found on the Council's website at:

For further information:

For further information: Norman Sabourin, Executive Director and General
Counsel, (613) 288-1566, ext.301

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