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Tory candidate faces smuggling charges


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[color:blue]Update: I just saw Harper on TV saying that if this guy wins, he won't be sitting as a Conservative.

CBC.CA News - Full Story :


Tory candidate faces smuggling charges

Last Updated: Jan 12 2006 07:21 AM PST

The Conservative candidate in the riding of B.C. Southern Interior is facing charges of attempting to smuggle a car and 112 bottles of liquor into Canada from the U.S.

Canada Customs and Revenue alleges Derek Zeisman tried to smuggle a Mercedes Benz from the U.S. into Canada, in July 2004, and that the car was loaded up with 112 bottles of liquor. He's also accused of lying to customs officers about the incident.


Zeisman, who is to appear in court next month, did not tell his party about the charges, which he called "unjustified." And he says the information was leaked by someone in the government who had a grudge against him.

If convicted, he could be fined up to $50,000 and face six months in jail.

Zeisman is running to replace retiring Tory MP Jim Gouk. And his party is now facing questions about why it didn't know its new candidate is going to trial next month.

"Well, the information that we obtained, we only obtained within the last 24 hours," said B.C. Conservative spokesperson Colin Metcalf.

He would not say why the charges weren't disclosed earlier – or what the party plans to do about it.

"Well, like I say, we're not making any more comments about this until we decide what direction we're going to go, and that's happening right now."

However, Tory campaign manager John Reynolds says the party intends to stand by Zeisman and the charges against him were only "administrative" in nature.

Zeisman's main rival, the NDP's Alex Atamanenko, says he's concerned that local voters were unaware of such a serious allegation, just two weeks before the election.

And he says it would have been far worse had Zeisman actually won the seat, and the news came out afterward.

"There might have been a feeling of betrayal, had that happened, and that's not the right thing to do."

Liberal candidate Bill Profili says Zeisman should either resign, or be removed. "If it were me, with that degree of investigation and with charges laid, as a matter of integrity, I would resign."

Zeisman is currently in hospital, recovering from a recent car crash.


Copyright © 2006 Canadian Broadcasting Corporation - All Rights Reserved


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Definately stress related.

The conspiracy theorist in me thinks that this was staged, to show how decisive Harper can be when it comes to make tough (but really not so tough decisions)... no Ralph Goodale this time... and before people get on me for bleeding blue... Sveen Robinson isn't with the NDP anymore is he?

everyone in politics needs a scapegoat in their backpocket.

I'm not expecting Harper to deliver the Renasaince... I'll leave that for Peter McKay as I touch 40 years old... but atleast he won't blink when it comes time to fix what's broke. There's so much mess, I wouldn't even expect the hot button issues to be addressed until the end of the campaign... just in time for a new Liberal government to take over, so the PC's have a real good excuse to get a new Leader... one with vision.

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