December 18, 1962 (25th Parliament, 1st Session)


William Arnold Peters

New Democratic Party

Mr. Peters:

Mr. Chairman, I am wondering what scrutiny the committee gave to this bill, particularly in light of the previous bill which we discussed, in which certain charges were made which were quite easily established. I
notice that in this bill there is reference to investigators. To my mind this always raises the question as to who those investigators are, whether they are licensed by the Senate and have the right granted to them by the Senate to practice their profession. I also wonder whether the Senate has made investigation of these people. I raise this point not only in relation to this bill but also in relation to a number of cases in which investigations took place and perjury charges were laid. Some of the detectives concerned, with whom I am not familiar, have been convicted in various courts in Ontario and in the province of Quebec, and I am wondering whether the committee took the trouble to investigate these particular witnesses to ascertain whether they fell into that category.
Mr. Chairman, this is doubly important because the evidence we are looking at was obtained on January 29, 1962, which is a long time ago. It has been renewed by petition, in which the Senate asked whether the parties wished to go ahead with the case and whether or not during the period which had elapsed between the two hearings the petitioner and the respondent had got together and continued to live as man and wife. This is very important because certainly jurists have indicated that evidence given by detectives has to be closely scrutinized in view of the fact that these people are paid for the information they give. They are not disinterested witnesses; they are paid witnesses. It is interesting to note that in the supreme court of Ontario-

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