A story that is developing in Canada caught my eye when RCMP laid five charges against a Calgary man related to the operation of a website highly critical of Calgary police officers. While heavy handed antics by the police may be nothing new, this does appear to reach new levels. (editor's note.. new high or an all time low! Not convinced.. did anyone catch the G-20 summit in Toronto with people arrested using a “newly enacted pretend law”)
At a news conference the RCMP announcing the charges against John Kelly, 53, of Calgary, Supt. Randy McGinnis said the charges are very rare. "In my 29 years, I've never heard of an individual being charged under the criminal code for libel charges, defamation of character,".
While there are conflicting reports, it does appear that the police have requested that the website host Register.com voluntarily take the site down We are awaiting a response from Register for a comment. There is also no word on whether officials have requested a court order to shut rottenapples.info down.
On the surface, the site appears to be the rantings of a disgruntled citizen who claims “The purpose of this site is to expose the rotten apples and corruption within the Calgary Police Service. And make no mistake it exists. This site will focus on seven criminal investigations and the lengths that the Calgary Police Service will go to, in order to prevent the details surrounding those investigations from coming out. This includes the police knowingly allowing criminal acts to go unpunished, including those committed by Calgary Police Officers.” end quote...
What I did find strikingly amiss in the various mainstream news reports was the lack of a link or even a mention of the name of the website. Coincidence no doubt!
We have requested a comment from John Kelly on whether he has had any communications with Register, or whether the police have had any communication that he is aware of. For now rottenapples.info is up and continues to attract the curious. Police should have read the HostJury's post "Cease and Desist” Takedown Letters can add buzz... and sales
Update... a response from John Kelly