bankagate 

After several months of investigation Crown prosecutors have decided charges won't be laid against Mayor Ted Nebbeling for his role in closing down Helmut Banka's dog operation. But Banka's lawyer says things are going to start heating up quickly. Lawyer Bruce Cran says the RCMP have taken the position the dispute is a civil matter, rather than a criminal matter. Cran says he will be proceeding with a civil court action. Last March Banka turned over some of his dogs to municipal authorities for examination by a veterinarian, after complaints about the state of some of his dogs. Later that month Ministry of Lands officials destroyed Banka's kennel, which was built illegally on Crown land outside the Resort Municipality of Whistler boundaries. Another kennel was constructed and Banka was told to remove it. Eventually Ministry of Lands staff seized the dogs and destroyed the pen. Banka's dogs were never returned to him. Banka asked the office of the provincial ombudsman to intervene in the matter. He was told that the ombudsman's office has no jurisdiction in matters involving municipal personnel. Banka also asked that charges be brought against Nebbeling. After the matter was reviewed by several prosecutors it was decided no criminal charges would be laid.

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