WSPA president objects to coverage

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, July/August 2008:
World Society for the Protection of
Animals president Dominique Bellemare responded
as shown at left to the print edition of the June
2008 ANIMAL PEOPLE article “Rise of Quebec
politician to WSPA board presidency raises
ANIMAL PEOPLE of course regrets that we
did not learn earlier that Bellemare’s former
legal partner Harry Bloomfield was eventually
acquitted on appeal of the alleged offenses for
which he was convicted four years earlier.
Bellemare could have provided that information
before the press date in response to our
questions, but he did not do so.

Neither did Bellemare take the
opportunity before the June edition of ANIMAL
PEOPLE went to press to inform us that “I stopped
being a partner or even worked for Bloomfield
Bellemare in 1998.”
Bellemare in later correspondence
asserted that “The CV that you suppose to be mine
and put together by me, was never done by me,
but by the CBC. What they clearly did was to put
together what they already had on me in 1997,
and added ‘defeated in 1997,’ as I had done much
more between 1997 and 2004.”
This would indicate that Bellemare is
currently making his third run for Parliament
without [yet] correcting a CBC campaign biography
that was already outdated when he made his second
run four years ago.
Regardless of when exactly Bellemare and
Bloomfield ended their partnership, which began
in 1991, and regardless of Bloomfield’s eventual
acquittal on appeal, the questions for Bellemare
about the matter remain the same, and are the
same questions that are usually asked of public
figures whose close associates are involved in
ethical issues: What did he know? When did he
know it?
Bloomfield was convicted in the U.S. in
November 2002 “for using corporations and bank
accounts in secrecy havens such as Belize and
Liberia to facilitate securities fraud schemes
orchestrated by their New York clients,”
recounted Stephanie Ayers of Financial Crime News
in an April 2005 special report.
Wrote Gretchen Morgenson of The New York
Times of the April 2001 indictment, “Stuart
Creggy, a senior partner at Talbot Creggy in
London and a former Queen’s Magis-trate, and
Harry J. F. Bloomfield, a lawyer and Queen’s
Counsel in Montreal… were charged with
conspiracy, criminal possession of forged
instruments and falsifying business records.
Beginning in 1993, according to the indictment,
the two lawyers began creating dummy corporations
and bank accounts to help three principals in a
New Jersey brokerage firm manipulate shares in a
handful of small companies.”
The Bloomfield case was further
described, as ANIMAL PEOPLE reported, by New
York County district attorney’s office
investigations division bureau chief Arthur D.
Middlemiss in testimony to a March 29, 2006
hearing on “Offshore banking, corruption, and
the war on terrorism” convened by the U.S. House
of Representatives Committee on Inter-national
Relations Subcommittee on Oversight &
The Bloomfield case appears to have
concluded in June 2006. According to Anthony Lin
of the New York Law Journal, “Bloomfield and
Creggy were both convicted on charges of
conspiracy and falsifying business records, but
the Appellate Division, 1st Department ruled
that the prosecution had not proved that
Bloomfield possessed the ‘intent to defraud’
required for conviction. Even though Bloom-field
had been ‘instrumental’ in getting [a former
Liberian diplomat] to sign 16 letters claiming
his ownership of offshore companies, the
appellate panel said prosecutors had not shown
the lawyer knew these letters’ purpose was to
mislead the Securities and Exchange
Commis-sion… While [the court] found that
Bloomfield’s conviction was against the weight of
the evidence, it concluded the evidence
supported Creggy’s conviction.”
Bloomfield’s conviction was in Febru-ary
2006 upheld on an earlier appeal. Sum-marized the
New York Court of Appeals, “The issue
presentedŠis whether there is sufficient evidence
that fraudulent letters kept in the files of an
enterprise’s legal counsel, rather than at the
company’s headquarters, were ‘business records’
as defined by penal lawŠWe conclude that the
location where a document is maintained is
merely a factor, not determinative, of its
status as a business record under the statute.”
This appears to put the documents
occasioning the case in the offices of the former
law partnership Bloomfield, Bellemare.
Wrote Bellemare in response to further
questions, “The Bloomfield problems happenned in
2002, 4 years after I left. I always made clear
that I did not know about this matter (until
Bloomfiled was charged), was never involved with
it, and was not even questionned by reporters or
investigators about it.”
ANIMAL PEOPLE asked, “How and when did you make this ‘clear’?”
Responded Bellemare on June 19, 2008,
“I received sevral calls following the news in
2002, and this is when statements were made. i
already told you that this matter of Bllomfield
was part of a Bloomfield bellemare file, and I
was not part of it, nor aware of it.”

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