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Info commissioner says Highway of Tears emails deliberately deleted, contacts RCMP

BC’s Information and Privacy Commissioner says she’s “deeply disappointed” after her investigation revealed major deficiencies in access to information practices of the BC Government.

Elizabeth Denham launched the probe after a former transportation ministry staffer alleged that records related to the Highway of Tears were destroyed after an access to information request was made.

Denham says her investigation uncovered negligent searches for records, a failure to keep adequate email records, a failure to document searches, and willful destruction of records responsive to an access request.

The commissioner’s report found that, in the Highway 16-related incident, it was likely ministerial assistant George Gretes deleted emails in contravention of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

Denham has referred the matter to the RCMP for investigation of possible offences.

The BC government says Gretes has resigned from his position.

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