ontario news watch

Fate of former RCMP official accused of leaking secrets now in hands of jury

OTTAWA — The fate of Cameron Jay Ortis, a former RCMP official accused of leaking secrets, is now in the hands of a jury.

The 12 jurors retired today to consider a verdict after Justice Robert Maranger finished instructing them on how to approach their task.

Ortis, 51, has testified he offered secret material to investigative targets in a bid to get them to use an online encryption service secretly set up by an allied intelligence agency to spy on adversaries. 

He has pleaded not guilty to violating the Security of Information Act by revealing secrets to three individuals in 2015 and trying to do so in a fourth instance, as well as breach of trust and a computer-related offence.

The Crown argues Ortis lacked authority to disclose classified material and that he was not doing so as part of an undercover operation.

The defence contends Ortis did not betray Canada, but was rather acting on a “clear and grave threat.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 20, 2023.

The Canadian Press