Deadline for B.C. missing women inquiry report extended
The provincial government has given the commissioner of B.C.’s missing women inquiry until the end of October to deliver his report.
Minister of Justice and Attorney General Shirley Bond announced today (May 31) the deadline for Commissioner Wally Oppal’s delivery of the report has been extended from the end of June to October 31, 2012, and will be released to the public soon after that.
"It's essential there is enough time to consider a significant volume of evidence and testimony, analyze it properly, and develop thoughtful and thorough recommendations,” Bond said in a news release.
“This extension will give the commissioner the time he needs to prepare the report so that it will be received with the credibility it deserves."
Bond had previously given Oppal a six-month extension from the original deadline of December 2011.
Evidentiary hearings began Oct. 11, 2011, and the commission’s work has also included public policy forum and study commission reports.
Appeals from the B.C. NDP and family members of missing and murdered women to extend evidentiary hearings in order to hear from more witnesses have been denied.
The inquiry was boycotted by most of the advocacy groups that were granted standing in the process after their requests for funding to cover legal costs were denied.
Oppal is scheduled to hear final submissions next week.
The missing women inquiry was established by the B.C. government to examine the police investigations of women that went missing from the Downtown Eastside in the years leading up to Robert Pickton’s arrest in 2002.
Pickton was convicted of six second-degree murders, and once told an undercover police officer that he had killed 49 women.