Inquiries on CPAC

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Inquiries on CPAC - The Air India Inquiry – May 17, 2007 (Part 1 of 2)

Commission of Inquiry into the Investigation of the Bombing of Air India Flight 182

Witnesses : Michael Anne MacDonald, Graham F. Pinos

Commission Counsel Brian Gover makes brief introductory remarks. Michael Anne MacDonald (a former employee of the Ministry of the Attorney General, Ontario) testifies under direct examination by Commission Counsel Brian Gover. Testimony focuses on a June 1985 conversation in Los Angeles, California, between Ms. MacDonald and Mel Deschesnes, the director-general of the counter-terrorism branch of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) at the time. Ms. MacDonald recalls Mr. Duschesne’s claim that he needed to return to Canada urgently because of significant activity related to Sikh extremism in Vancouver, British Columbia. Ms. MacDonald also discusses subsequent encounters with CSIS agents in the mid-1980s. Norman Boxall (Counsel for the Air India Victims’ Families Association) and Tracey McCann (Counsel for the Attorney General of Canada) cross-examine Ms. MacDonald. Ms. McCann asks Ms. MacDonald about CSIS’s knowledge of Sikh extremism in Canada and of threats to Air India prior to the bombing of Air India flight 182. A lengthy, acrimonious exchange ensues between Ms. McCann and Ms. MacDonald concerning a 1988 meeting with James Jardine, a British Columbia Crown attorney at the time. Ms. McCann further questions Ms. MacDonald about her June 1985 conversation with Mr. Deschesnes. Leslie McIntosh, Counsel for the Attorney General of Ontario, cross-examines Ms. MacDonald. Graham F. Pinos (a former employee of the Department of Justice) testifies under direct examination by Mr. Gover. Mr. Pinos describes the relationship between the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and CSIS shortly after the creation of CSIS in 1984. He describes a June 1985 conversation with Mr. Deschesnes in Los Angeles, in which Mr. Deschesnes allegedly spoke about Sikh extremists plotting the bombing of an Air India flight. Ms. McCann cross-exam

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