CRA waited months to battle breach
The Canada Revenue Agency waited a year and a half after it was warned of a security breach leaking information to gang members before it suspended an employee, CTV News has learned.
The CRA, which is responsible for collecting Canadian taxes, was first told by Abbotsford police of the risk in November 2007 -- but it didn't suspend the employee until April 2008.
"If they are aware of this then he should have been suspended -- I don't know what the problem could be," said Yasmin Ratansi, the Liberal critic for National Revenue.
The Minister of National Revenue, Jean-Pierre Blackburn, wouldn't talk about the specific case.
CTV News has learned that it was in November 2006 that the Abbotsford police learned via a wiretap that there could be a leak at the CRA.
The indication was that the leak was to rivals to the United Nations Gang, a violent upstart B.C. gang.
The Canada Revenue Agency responded, saying that it didn't have enough information to start an investigation.
Then, in June 2007, the Organized Crime Agency gave the CRA another warning, according to court testimony.
After that, the CRA investigated and found the employee had indeed abused his security access, CTV has learned.
But it wasn't until April 2008 -- a full 18 months after the first warning -- that the CRA finally suspended its employee.
Critics wonder why the employee continued to have access to sensitive information for so long.
"I want to know if there were proper checks, and that's why an investigation is important," said Liberal Public Safety Critic Ujjal Dosanjh. "The government has to fess up."
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Jon Woodward