Sask. premier recuses himself from order in council pardoning relative's traffic offence

·2 min read
Premier Scott Moe signed an order in council that pardoned dozens of people for provincial offences, including a family member, Kris Moe, who says he was mistakenly ticketed.  (Matt Duguid/CBC - image credit)
Premier Scott Moe signed an order in council that pardoned dozens of people for provincial offences, including a family member, Kris Moe, who says he was mistakenly ticketed. (Matt Duguid/CBC - image credit)

Premier Scott Moe recused himself from the consideration of an order in council that pardoned dozens of people for provincial offences, including a family member.

Kris Moe, who confirms he's the premier's relative but wouldn't confirm how they're related, was pardoned for driving through an amber light at or near Prince Albert, Sask. on or about Jan. 23, 2021, according to the order-in-council signed by the premier last month.

The Canadian Press says Kris Moe is the premier's brother, though Kris wouldn't confirm.

Kris says a police officer wrongfully issued him a ticket, and that he wasn't in Prince Albert at the time.

"I phoned the officer and he said, 'Oh, I messed up' and then whatever happened, happened," he said in an interview.

Kris Moe says he didn't go to court, because he didn't know he had a ticket and wasn't involved in the process to get a pardon.

Kris says he and the premier didn't speak about this incident.

"He's just doing his job and names come across. I was wrongfully accused," he said. "He would've done the same for any other civilian."

The premier's press secretary says Moe recused himself from the consideration of the order-in-council.

"Pardons are brought forward annually based on the advice and recommendations of justice officials for Lieutenant Governor approval, which has been a long-standing practice in the province," wrote Julie Leggott.

Noel Busse, a Ministry of Justice spokesperson, said the police service or an RCMP detachment recommends pardons for traffic offences. He said misidentification is among four reasons for police to recommend a pardon.

"In each case, the actual offender identified himself or herself to the peace officer as someone else at the time the ticket was issued. Subsequent police investigation revealed that an improper charge and conviction was entered against the wrong individual," Busse said in a statement.

Other reasons include a police agency or prosecutor inadvertently overlooking withdrawal of a ticket, new information arising after ticket convictions or an administrative error.

Political blogger — and a media relations consultant who worked as a researcher for the opposition NDP until 2020 — Tammy Robert first posted the order-in-council on her blog, and expressed outrage about the situation.

"This is completely beyond the pale. And it's stunning to me that there would be some suggestion of recusal when his signature is on the front of the document," Roberts said.

"I think we need to understand what exactly he's claiming he recused himself from."

Moe didn't respond to CBC's request for comment.

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