|For immediate release||October 25, 2001|
Statement by the Law Society of B.C.
Law Society of B.C. President Richard Margetts, Q.C. today issued this statement regarding Premier Gordon Campbell's recent remarks concerning Madam Justice Marvyn Koenigsberg's decision to grant bail to Ali Adham Amhaz:
"The Law Society wishes to express its concern as to elected members of government criticizing judicial decisions. If the government believes the decision of a judicial officer is incorrect, the government's remedy is to appeal that decision.
"Judges, not being free to defend themselves, are entitled to receive the support of the legal profession. It is unfortunate that the premier sought to politicize a judicial decision in circumstances where the appropriate remedy has not been pursued.
"The legal profession must always be vigorous in its protection of the fundamental rights and privileges of the members of our community. Part of ensuring that those fundamental rights are protected involves ensuring that our judges are not the targets of unwarranted criticism for their application of the laws that govern us all."
With over 10,000 members, the Law Society of British Columbia is the governing body for the B.C. legal profession. Its chief executive officer is the Executive Director and its senior elected official is the President. The Law Society's principal responsibility is to uphold and protect the public interest in the administration of justice and to set standards for the education, professional responsibility and competence of practising lawyers in the province.
Law Society of B.C. media contact:
Brad Daisley, Public Affairs Manager
Office: 604-443-5724 or 1-800-903-5300 toll-free in B.C.