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Sts’ailes Chief Ralph Leon Jr. charged with public mischief

Criminal code offence usually involves making false statements accusing others of committing crimes
Sts’ailes First Nation Chief Ralph Leon Jr. addresses the crowd on the inaugural National Day for Truth and Reconciliation on Sept. 30, 2021. (Adam Louis/ Black Press file)

The chief of the Sts’ailes First Nation is facing a criminal charge of public mischief in connection with an alleged incident involving his spouse.

Chief Ralph Leon Jr. is charged with the K file (domestic allegation) for an incident from June 2022.

None of the details of the case have come out in court, but the alleged victim in the case is his spouse Annie Silver.

A public mischief charge falls under section 140 of the criminal code, which covers incidents of people intentionally misleading law enforcement officers by starting investigations into crimes that didn’t happen.

Examples from the criminal code specifically include “making a false statement that accuses some other person of having committed an offence” or “reporting that an offence has been committed when it has not been committed.”

Leon was in news back in 2015 when Crown counsel dropped charges of eagle poaching filed against him and Gary Abbott after nearly 10 years of winding itself through the courts.

Leon, Abbott and nine other men faced a total of 105 charges related to the unlawful possession of dead wildlife, trafficking in dead wildlife and other related offences dating back to 2005.

The charges stemmed from a B.C. Conservation Officer Service (BCCOS) investigation that found 50 dead eagles in North Vancouver.

Senior conservation officer Rick Grindrod used undercover operations to attend powwows and other cultural events to lure Indigenous men into illegal activity. In one instance, the pair’s lawyer George Wool said the BCCOS lured a vulnerable young man with fetal alcohol syndrome to shoot eagles before charging him.

Many of the men pleaded guilty to put the matter behind them, but Abbott and Leon fought on until Sept. 10, 2015 when Crown counsel James MacAulay dropped the charges.

READ MORE: Eagle poaching charges against Chilliwack men dropped after nine years in court

Black Press reached out to Leon earlier in the week to allow him to comment on the K-file charge involving his spouse but did not receive a response by Friday (May 26) afternoon.

Silver also did not want to speak about the circumstances until the matter is resolved.

Leon’s first appearance to face the charge is scheduled for June 27.

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