VANCOUVER EASTSIDE MISSING WOMEN
Broadcaster, UBC investigated over alleged breach of Pickton publication ban
By TERRI THEODORE
VANCOUVER (CP) - The RCMP is investigating a U.S. broadcaster and the University of British Columbia over allegations of breaking a publication ban in the case against accused serial killer Robert Pickton.
A story carried by the broadcaster allegedly described crime scene details, some of which were banned at Pickton's preliminary hearing. The story also mentioned that a judge had imposed a media ban on evidence presented at that hearing.
A text version of the story was then posted on the university's website because the reporter quoted one of the school's professors.
RCMP Cpl. Catherine Galliford said Thursday the potential breaches will be investigated by a criminal investigation unit.
Charges will be laid if there has been a breach of the media ban, she said.
"We'll have to take a look at the content of the reporter's story and also take another look at the judge's decision with regard to the publication ban and then we'll have a look at charges being laid," she said.
The article was quickly pulled from the university website, said school spokesman Scott Macrae.
"This was an inadvertent mistake," said Macrae. "We really regret it. As soon as we found out about out it, we removed it from the website."
Last December, the prosecutor in the case indicated he would be adding seven more murder charges to the 15 already filed against the former pig farmer.
The case is connected to Vancouver's missing women's investigation where more than 60 women are missing from the city's Downtown Eastside.
Pickton, 54, is not expected to go to trial until late this year or early in 2005.
Police executed a raid on the farm owned by Pickton and his two siblings on Feb. 6, 2002.
Investigators wrapped up a mass excavation and property search in November.
The charges against Pickton so far are four more than the number admitted to by Canada's most notorious serial killer, Clifford Robert Olson.
Updated: January 01, 2007