By P.J. Malone
In 2013, a private criminal prosecution case was launched against producers and a host with Canada’s national television broadcaster, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). CBC producers and host were to answer to charges of defamatory libel against fashion mogul Peter Nygard.
When a Manitoba court in Canada subsequently held in 2015 that these associates of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) “may be guilty of defamatory libel”, and therefore the criminal prosecution against the CBC could proceed, the CBC appealed the decision to the appeals court.
The CBC producers and host are accused of airing a show in April of 2010 that knowingly used individuals who were not credible and knowingly used information that could be false against Peter Nygard.
On Saturday, the Winnipeg Sun newspaper reported in the online article “Nygard scores win against CBC” that a Manitoba court of appeal gave a ruling this past Friday denying the CBC’s attempt to get the case thrown out.
The Winnipeg Sun quotes this from the Manitoba Court of Appeal’s decision:
“For the purposes of this appeal, subject to the hearsay submission that will be addressed later, the applicants do not contest the (knowledge of wrongdoing) of the offences or that there was some evidence before the (provincial court judge) that the content of the episode was false and gravely defamatory of Nygard,” the decision read. “Rather they argue that the medium used (a television broadcast) cannot support the ‘publication’ of a ‘libel.’”
This latest ruling means Mr. Nygard will be able to proceed in the private criminal prosecution case against the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
A Toronto Sun’s 2013 article “Criminal libel case between Peter Nygard, CBC proceeds”—in reference to the initial launch of the Private Criminal Prosecution—reported the following statement quoting Mr. Nygard’s lawyer with respect to the case:
“’Defamatory libel is an unusual charge to begin with … but a defamatory libel prosecution against our national broadcasting corporation and two producers and a commentator is really without precedent in the annals of Canadian legal history.’”
The article also states, “The CBC and three named journalists are accused of defamatory libel and publishing a defamatory libel knowing it to be false. The maximum sentences for the offences are two years and five years in prison, respectively.”
The show profiling Mr. Nygard was produced on “The Fifth Estate” and featured reputed con artists who levied a number of accusations and attacks against Mr. Nygard.
In an article with the subtitle “Serial fraudster seen on Fifth Estate to appear in St. Lucia court” written by a Winnipeg Sun reporter, it states this about the individuals who appeared on “The Fifth Estate” television show reportedly maligning Nygard’s character:
“According to police in St. Lucia, the couple has ‘a history of committing frauds in other Caribbean islands, leaving each jurisdiction for the next island when identified by law enforcement officials.’”
The CBC’s show on “The Fifth Estate” alleged to have defamed Mr. Nygard is tied directly to the plotting of the ‘Lyford Cay Group’ to destroy Peter Nygard.
The sworn statement of the Scotland Yard detective—who was hired by Mr. Nygard to get to the bottom of the attacks against him (as fully explained in past Clifton Review articles)—submitted to a Bahamas court, suggests that there was a direct link between the Lyford Cay plot against Mr. Nygard and the CBC producers.
Based on the court documents from the 2012 case Nygard filed against hedge-fund billionaire Louis Bacon, the Lyford Cay executive, the Free National Movement Cabinet Minister, the Lyford Cay investigator, and others, the Scotland Yard detective revealed the Lyford Cay investigator’s role in helping in the production of the CBC’s television show “The Fifth Estate” when it allegedly used false information against Mr. Nygard.
A date is now expected to be set for a preliminary inquiry in the Private Criminal Prosecution case against the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, producers, and a host.