Tag: Peter

Law Society of Manitoba ordered to investigate complaint against Peter Nygard’s lawyer

The Law Society of Manitoba has been ordered to investigate a professional misconduct complaint against Winnipeg lawyer Jay Prober for comments he made about women who allege they were sexually assaulted by Peter Nygard.

The law society initially dismissed the complaint because the complainant, Ottawa human rights lawyer Richard Warman, had no connection to the case.

Warman filed a complaint in June after reading a CBC News article which quoted Prober as saying a woman who accused his client, Peter Nygard, of rape was “a purported actress who is now playing another role” and had “jumped on the perceived money train.” 

Prober called another alleged sex assault victim “probably another complainant who has been paid for false evidence.”

Warman appealed the decision to dismiss his complaint, and the Manitoba law society’s complaints review commissioner ordered the investigation.

“They had not bothered to conduct even the least investigation into it,” Warman said in a phone interview with CBC News.  

Fifty-seven women have filed a civil class-action lawsuit in New York against Nygard, claiming they were raped or sexually assaulted. Some of them allege they were assaulted when they were just 14 or 15 years old.

On Feb. 25, 2020, the FBI raided Nygard company offices in New York as part of a criminal investigation. (Earl Wilson/The New York Times)

The lawsuit was put on hold in August after the U.S. government requested a stay of proceedings.

Nygard denies all allegations against him and claims his former neighbour in the Bahamas — billionaire Louis Bacon, who Nygard has been feuding with for years — is paying the women to make up allegations as part of a conspiracy to destroy his reputation and business. 

In a Sept. 8 letter to Warman, Manitoba law society complaints review commissioner Drew Perry said, “while a lawyer is permitted to make the same type statements in public as he/she would make in court, I agree that the statements attributed to Mr. Prober are concerning, especially in the MeToo era of shifting expectations.”

He added that “The only way that I have to take the matter further, and in the process obtain his explanation for his alleged comments, is to order an investigation. I am now doing that.”

One of the women in the class-action lawsuit told CBC News she came forward in part because of Prober’s comments in the media about the other alleged victims. 

Warman says that alone should have been reason enough for the law society to investigate his complaint.

The society, Warman says, is in the “unique position to say to a member of the profession that engaging in that kind of conduct is not only subject to investigation by us as the law society, but it’s also questionable because it raises the issue of whether those kinds of comments in and of themselves are spawning further litigation.”

Richard Warman says he’s concerned the only public acknowledgement of the law society’s investigation will come if it proceeds to a hearing before a tribunal. (Submitted
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Will Morrison government learn from its Covid success or return to trickle-down economics? | Peter Lewis | Opinion

Reality constantly reminds us that the biggest risk the pandemic poses is to those who think it is less than it seems. From the White House to the safe house, this is a virus that locks on to system weakness and exploits individual arrogance.

The US presidential race is paralysed because one of the candidates believed he had the power to wish it away and let freedom reign, while countries like Sweden that chose to let it run are paying a higher economic cost than those whose governments swung into action.

Closer to home, Victorians have been living the repercussions of the previously unchallenged orthodoxies that you can outsource public safety and transform the care for our oldest and most vulnerable from a public service into a market.

It’s as if the virus is engaging in a real-time critique of the free market ideology that decrees big government is bad, taxes are a burden, caring for others is counterproductive and the market will always determine the best course of action.

As Kurt Anderson has outlined in his excellent new book Evil Geniuses, these assumptions lie at the heart of a political model ruthlessly promoted for the past 50 years by an organised cabal of wealthy industrialists, libertarians and the “useful idiots” they seconded to their cause.

Now, as the world thinks through a recovery to the pandemic’s shock, the Friedman model of trickle-down economics, deregulation and rabid individualism is finally coming under scrutiny.

This context takes centre stage as the Morrison government releases its delayed budget later on Tuesday. Like so much of what this government does, the plan has been broken into so many pre-packaged announce-ables that it’s hard to see a bigger picture. But there is one.

While there is no hiding the fact that the prematurely celebrated budget surplus is history, the levers the government is pulling seem geared to getting the economy back to where it was before the crisis hit. It’s business as usual with a deferred payment plan.

We caught this thinking in the government’s initial response to the forced lockdown: incentives for small businesses to invest in expansion when all they were thinking about was survival; incentives for home renovations when a new pagoda is the last thing on anyone’s mind.

These were textbook Freidman-inspired attempts to bookkeep our way through a downturn, giving business and individuals financial incentives to do things that were against their disposition. Unsurprisingly, they were undersubscribed and fell flat.

It wasn’t until the crisis prompted the government to put money directly into the pockets of those most vulnerable that the strategy began to work. Doubling unemployment support and providing struggling businesses with a Keynesian lifeline may have been anathema, but it got money circulating in a shocked economy.

The big question for today’s budget is: can the government can learn from these successes? Early indications suggest not.

The choices the government is making speak to a desire to go back to the way things were. Tax cuts

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