Public Prosecution Service of Canada to Review Autopsy-Related Files

Ottawa - May 1, 2007 - The Public Prosecution Service of Canada is cooperating with the territorial Coroners' Offices in the identification and review of cases in which pathologist Dr. Charles Smith may have played a role. Autopsy files in the North are currently being reviewed to determine if Dr. Smith worked on any of them.

The PPSC is the organization responsible for Criminal Code prosecutions in the North.

In view of the concerns raised about autopsies performed over the past 27 years, a file review at this time serves the public interest,” said Brian Saunders, Acting Director of Public Prosecutions.

The PPSC has written to the chief coroners of Nunavut and the Northwest Territories to confirm that the PPSC will provide whatever assistance possible to aid in the review of any files that are identified as involving Dr. Smith.

Before the creation of Nunavut, all prosecutions for the Eastern Arctic were conducted by the Northwest Territories Regional Office of the Department of Justice (now the Public Prosecution Service of Canada).

The PPSC will conduct its own search of homicide prosecution files from the Eastern Arctic.

The Public Prosecution Service of Canada was created in December 2006 to prosecute criminal offences under federal jurisdiction. The PPSC is independent and reports to Parliament through the Attorney General of Canada.

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Information:

Dan Brien
Public Prosecution Service of Canada
613.946.3821
dbrien@ppsc.gc.ca

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