"Fantino can call it whatever he wants, but the message is very, very clear: He is threatening to effectively withdraw police services (from
"His efforts to intimidate elected officials in
Earlier this month, Commissioner Fantino sent an e-mail warning the
The group has criticized the OPP's handling of a 14-month standoff with natives occupying a 40-hectare tract of land they claim is theirs.
Commissioner Fantino's angry e-mail is apparently sparked by one councillor's comments supporting the leader of that group, Gary McHale, whom he calls "a lightning rod for confrontation and potential violence."
The e-mail goes on to say that if further violence results from a McHale-led protest, Commissioner Fantino would support any lawsuits filed by officers, will pass on the ensuing policing costs to the county and will recommend that the OPP not renew its contract with the county when it expires in September 2008.
Yesterday, Solicitor General Monte Kwinter, who hand-picked the former
"I'm not going to comment on what I thought of (the e-mail)," Mr. Kwinter told reporters. "I have confidence in the commissioner."
But Mr. Kormos said that wasn't enough."I think, at this point, the government has to call for Fantino to withdraw as OPP commissioner," he said in an interview. "His conduct -- this e-mail -- is a very, very serious matter. It's police interference with discourse by elected politicians. That isn't supposed to happen in democratic countries."