One of six Vancouver residents trying to unseat the mayor has refused to disclose who's paying his legal bills.
Randy Helten and the other petitioners are seeking a judicial declaration that Mayor Gregor Robertson and Vision Vancouver councillor Geoff Meggs are "not qualified" to remain in office.
They're seeking a court order naming NPA mayoral candidate Kirk LaPointe as mayor and forcing the 11th-place finisher in the council race, the NPA's Ian Robertson, to replace Meggs.
The six petitioners are represented by David Wotherspoon, a partner at the downtown firm of Fasken Martineau.
The same firm is representing LaPointe and the NPA after they were sued by Robertson and Meggs two weeks before the election.
When I asked Helten who's paying for Wotherspoon's services, he replied, "It's a good question, but I'd rather not answer that and focus on the content of the case and not distract people from that."
I pointed out to Helten that the Straight has already posted an article on the content, which was written by Carlito Pablo. Helten said he hadn't seen it.
Then I told Helten that I was curious if NPA president Peter Armstrong is paying for his court action to try to unseat Robertson and Meggs.
"Well, people might speculate that, but we, yeah, we just don't want to distract from the content of the case," Helten said.
We parted ways because it was clear to me that Helten wasn't interested in responding to this line of inquiry.
The NPA and LaPointe are represented by Geoff Cowper, who is Fasken Martineau's senior counsel and leads the litigation and dispute resolution group.
Wotherspoon's specialties include defamation. According to the firm's website, his "cases have involved protecting businesses that have been targeted in a way that requires intense and swift action and often injunctions to safeguard clients' rights".
In 2006, Fasken Martineau represented Great Canadian Railtour on a $45-million financing package. Armstrong is the railway company's executive chairman and founder.