SAMPIS and other musings

I’ll post a copy of the email I received from the Office of the Information Commissioner.


SAMPIS does not have searchable fields that would give the age of the victims. This is what DND itself has told the OIC. DND has also told the OIC that records outside of the SAMPIS system cannot be searched.

In the final report of the Fynes Public Interest Hearing, the Military Police Complaints Commission voiced numerous concerns about SAMPIS. SAMPIS does not retain a history of changes made to documents contained within the SAMPIS system. General Occurrence reports can be re-written and no history will remain of what was added, removed, or amended to the GO report. Article 636 from the Final Report of the Fynes Public Interest Hearing: ” The hearing revealed that, once created, SAMPIS entries can be, and routinely are, reviewed and edited by investigators and their supervisors. This is of particular importance as SAMPIS does not retain a history of changes made to a document. It saves only the latest version”

Now, so far as the CFNIS investigating historical child sexual abuse that occurred prior to 1998. This would be a legal impossibility. Prior to 1998, a service tribunal had to be commenced against an accused no more than three years after the date of the alleged service offence. This time bar was removed in 1998. Service offences included all criminal code matters. But certain offences had to be prosecuted through the Civilian courts.

Murder, manslaughter, and rape had to be prosecuted through the civilian courts prior to 1985.

After rape was removed from the Criminal Code in 1985 murder, manslaughter, and sexual assault had to be prosecuted through the civilian courts.

In 1998, the National Defence Act was amended and Murder, Manslaughter, and kidnapping are now the crimes that have to be prosecuted through the civilian courts.

It should be noted that rape was never a crime that could have ever applied to males. The Criminal Code was very specific that rape could only apply to females. This is how the Canadian Forces had a court martial for Captain Father Angus McRae in July of 1980 for the crimes of “gross indecency”, “Indecent assault”, and “buggery”. Also, in most cases, not every sexual assault of a female child resulted in rape charges. Indecent assault and gross indecency were the preferred charges. prior to 1985.

Anyways, back to the 3 year time bar.

Any former retired member of the Canadian Forces who was suspected of committing the crimes of “gross indecency”, “Indecent assault”, and “buggery” prior to 1985 would have their matter dealt with via a service tribunal as these were not excluded offences. This means that these crimes could never be prosecuted in the modern day as they would have to be prosecuted through the military justice system and more than 3-years have lapsed between the date of the offence and the resultant service tribunal.

The time period of 1985 until 1998 is a murky period as the Canadian Forces couldn’t conduct a service tribunal for the criminal code charge of sexual assault (271 – 272), but they could conduct a service tribunal for the criminal code charges of 151, 152, 173(2).

It should be noted that the criminal code of Canada has no such limitations on indictable offences and this is why you hear of civilian cases going to court where some 80 year old pervert, who was a hockey coach or a school janitor, molested kids back in the 60s.

Now, it also should be remembered that prior to November of 1997, the commanding officer of the accused was required to conduct a summary investigation AFTER the military police or the CFSIU laid charges against their subordinate. The flaw with this was that the commanding officer could dismiss any charge brought against their subordinate whether or not the commanding officer would have had the authority to try the accused on the charge. This means that prior to November of 1997, commanding officers could dismiss charges brought against their subordinates that would have had to have gone either to court martial or to the civilian courts.

Jurisdiction is another weird issue that changes more often than the weather. In 2011, the CFNIS took the investigation of my complaint of sexual assault at the hands of another military dependant away from the civilian police. I was 7, the accused was months shy of his 15th birthday. The Juvenile Delinquents Act made the accused culpable for any criminal code offence he committed as of the day of his 14th birthday. And there were a lot of offences.

In 2017 I made a complaint to the CFNIS related to some sexual assaults I endured at the hands of a commissionaire at the Denison Armouries in Toronto when I was in cadets. The Denison Armouries were a defence establishment, the commissionaire worked for the Canadian Corp of Commissionaires. The CFNIS in Borden handed this matter over to the Toronto Police Service. The TPS was able to lay six charges of sexual assault against Earl within a month of the TPS being given the case.

I can’t figure out what the criteria is for CFNIS claiming investigative jurisdiction and what the criteria is for the CFNIS to cede investigative jurisdiction. As I said, it seems to change more often than the weather.

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