RCMP official back in custody after judge revokes bail in secrets case

Cameron Jay Ortis was living with his parents in Abbotsford

RCMP official back in custody after judge revokes bail in secrets case

A senior RCMP intelligence official charged with breaking Canada’s secrets law was headed back to an Ottawa jail after a judge rescinded his bail Friday.

Under the terms of bail set last month by a justice of the peace, Cameron Jay Ortis was living with his parents in Abbotsford and had to report to police once a week and was forbidden from using any device that connects to the internet.

Ontario Superior Court Justice Marc Labrosse said Friday that Ortis would be returned to custody as a result of a review requested by the Crown.

The reasons for Labrosse’s decision and details of the Crown’s review application, heard last week, are covered by a publication ban.

Ortis, 47, faces charges under the Security of Information Act for allegedly disclosing secrets to an unknown recipient and planning to reveal additional classified information to an unspecified foreign entity.

He faces a total of seven counts under various provisions, dating from as early as Jan. 1, 2015, to Sept. 12 of this year.

“The Crown’s position was always that Mr. Ortis should be detained,” prosecutor Judy Kliewer said following Labrosse’s ruling. “I can’t say anything more about the case right now because of the publication ban, which is in place in order to protect Mr. Ortis’s right to a fair trial.”

RCMP officers were waiting Friday outside the Ortis family condominium in Abbotsford.

READ MORE: Alleged RCMP secret leaker must live with parents in Abbotsford while on bail

“We had to ensure that in the event that Mr. Ortis was detained, that there were plans in place to ensure that he was remanded into custody immediately, and we did that,” Kliewer said.

Ian Carter, a lawyer for Ortis, expressed disappointment after Friday’s hearing.

“We thought that the justice of the peace’s decision was reasonable and the correct one,” he said.

The defence wants to see more of the Crown’s case against Ortis, Carter added.

“Basically we need to get more disclosure, we don’t have all the disclosure yet to analyze the case and begin preparation for defending him against these charges.”

Kliewer said the Crown was ”continuing with the disclosure process” and would soon move to set trial dates.

Unlike the case for many criminal offences, Ortis had the burden of demonstrating why he should be freed on bail while he awaits trial on the secrets-law charges.

The bail conditions established last month required that Ortis and his parents, who were acting as sureties, each post a $125,000 bond.

One of his parents was to be in the B.C. residence with him at all times and accompany him on outings.

All phones, computers and tablets in the home were to be password-protected and locked away when not in the possession of Ortis’ parents.

In addition, Ortis could not attend any place that had public internet access, was forbidden from possessing weapons and was required to surrender his passport to authorities.

The Security of Information Act, passed following the 9/11 attacks on the United States, is intended to safeguard sensitive government secrets. Charges have been rare but Jeffrey Paul Delisle, a naval officer who gave classified material to Russia, pleaded guilty to offences under the act in 2012.

RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki has said the allegations against Ortis are unsettling, noting that as director general of the force’s National Intelligence Co-ordination Centre, he had access to information from domestic and international allies.

Lucki told a news conference in September that investigators came across documents during a joint investigation with the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation that led the Mounties to believe there could be some kind of “internal corruption.”

Jim Bronskill , The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Chris Sholberg, City of Nanaimo culture and heritage planner, left, presents a first-place award to Kevin Brandt for his restoration of his home’s exterior to its original state. Brandt is the first recipient of the Heritage House Renovation Awards, created by Nanaimo Community Archives to recognize renovation projects taken on in 2020 during the pandemic. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Nanaimo hands out its first heritage house renovation award

Awards created to recognize heritage renovation projects taken on during the pandemic

A rendering of the Lumina building proposed for 41-45 Haliburton St. in Nanaimo. (Matthew T. Hansen Architect image)
Next project proposed as part of a series of buildings on Nanaimo’s Haliburton Street

Five-storey building near Finlayson Street will include 38 residential units

Auto thief in black balaclava trying to break into car with screwdriver. (Pixabay photo)
Island hikers and park users warned to keep valuables in vehicles out of sight

Spring weather draws more hikers out to rural parking lots, where thieves are at work

Capt. Bryun Ashlie, left, and Lieut. Stu Kenning, of Nanaimo Fire Rescue, tackle fires burning in two shopping carts in St. George Ravine Park, Thursday afternoon. The cause of the fire, which destroyed both carts and their contents, is undetermined. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Shopping carts found burning in Nanaimo park

Firefighters douse flaming carts and contents on asphalt pathway

Nanaimo RCMP are looking for a motorcyclist who refused to stop for police near the Nanaimo River Road and White Rapids Road intersection on April 10. (Photo submitted)
Nanaimo RCMP seek ‘stunting’ motorcyclist, who fled from police

Rider spotted near intersection of Nanaimo River Road and White Rapids Road April 10

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and United States President Joe Biden smile as they say farewell following a virtual joint statement in Ottawa, Tuesday, February 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau pledges to cut emissions by 40% to 45% by 2030, short of U.S. goal

Trudeau announced target during a virtual climate summit convened by U.S. President Joe Biden

Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth speaks to media at the Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday February 5, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to announce travel restrictions today to limit COVID-19 spread

Mike Farnworth is expected to give details of what the government views as essential travel

A downed power line has sparked a brush fire along Yellow Point Road south of Nanaimo. (Cole Schisler/Black Press)
Vancouver Islanders warned of fire risk caused by dry conditions

As dry spell poised to end, officials warn of risks involved with backyard burning

Richard Desautel with supporters outside the courthouse in Nelson, B.C., in 2016. Photo: Bill Metcalfe
BREAKING: Sinixt, First Nation bordering Canada-U.S., can claim Indigenous rights, top court rules

The decision essentially reverses a 1956 declaration the Sinixt were extinct

MLA Shirley Bond, right, answers questions during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on February 19, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Former B.C. gaming minister says she wasn’t told directly about dirty cash flowing to casinos

Shirley Bond said Thursday civil forfeiture, gang violence and gambling addiction were also major concerns in 2011

RCMP Constable Etsell speaks to tourists leaving the area at a police roadblock on Westside Road south of Fintry, B.C., Thursday, July 23, 2009. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Yvonne Berg
B.C. police say they take ‘exception’ to conducting roadblocks limiting travel

Asking the police to enforce roadblocks exposes officers to further risk and possible COVID-19 infections, says federation president Brian Sauve

As part of the province’s strategy to combat the opioid overdose crisis, take-home naloxone kits have been distributed throughout the province. (Courtesy of Gaëlle Nicolussi)
Vancouver Island could be at its worst point of overdose crises yet: medical health officer

Island Health issued overdose advisories for Victoria, various communities in the last two weeks

The conservation service confirmed they do not relocate cougars from settled areas but that euthanasia is not necessarily the fate for an animal in the Fanny Bay area. The hope is that the animal will move on to wild areas. (File photo)
Woman hopes cat-stalking Fanny Bay cougar can avoid euthanization

Conservation officers do not relocate the animals from Vancouver Island

Tofino residents expressed frustration over a recent post by Long Beach Lodge owner Tim Hackett that falsely claimed all residents have been vaccinated. (Westerly file photo)
Resort owner apologizes for suggesting Tofino is safe to travel to

Long Beach Lodge owner Tim Hackett apologizes to community and visitors

Most Read