July 21, 2024
RCMP charge head of intelligence unit with allegedly leaking government secrets
John MacFarlane, senior counsel with the public prosecution service, outside an Ottawa courthouse after addressing media regarding charges against Cameron Ortis, a senior intelligence employee with the RCMP, Sept. 13, 2019.
John MacFarlane, senior counsel with the public prosecution service, outside an Ottawa courthouse after addressing media regarding charges against Cameron Ortis, a senior intelligence employee with the RCMP, Sept. 13, 2019.

A senior civilian employee at RCMP’s headquarters in Ottawa — described as a fitness buff with a “brilliant” mind and extensive knowledge of cyber-security issues, particularly in Southeast Asia — has been charged by his own force with violating national security by allegedly leaking government secrets.

Charges of this nature are extremely rare in Canada and experts in law enforcement described the developments as surprising and “extremely alarming.”

Cameron Ortis, 47, is accused of multiple violations under the Security of Information Act and the Criminal Code, including sharing “intentionally or without authority” special operational information; possessing a device or software for the purpose of concealing information or surreptitiously sharing or obtaining information; and breach of trust.

“The charges stem from activities alleged to have occurred during his tenure as an RCMP employee” the force said in a statement.

During a brief court appearance in Ottawa Friday, Ortis said little apart from his name and that he understood the charges against him. He faces a total of seven charges, including five federal secrecy charges, for alleged offences dating back to 2015.

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See Also:

(1) Five Eyes allies raising questions as damage control continues in Cameron Ortis case: sources

(2) “NIGHTMARE”: Cameron Ortis Allegations Could Be Worst National Security Breach In Canadian History

(3) Intelligence official charged seemed to be ‘exemplar of discretion’: former colleague

(4) Who will protect Canada from foreign spies?

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