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BC solicitor general Kash Heed resigns citing RCMP election investigation

British Columbia's Solicitor General Kash Heed resigned today saying the RCMP are investigating Elections Act violations from the 2009 provincial election campaign in Vancouver-Fraserview that Heed won.

“I have concluded, out of the respect and regard for the office of Solicitor General of British Columbia and to ensure the continued integrity of that office, that the appropriate action is to step aside pending the outcome of this investigation,” Heed said in a statement released this afternoon. “I have spoken with the Premier and he has accepted my decision.”

When Heed first learned of the investigation on March 24 he was told he was not a subject of the investigation, his statement said, but on April 6 was informed the “investigation was evolving” and the RCMP wanted to interview him to determine if he had a role in the allegations.

On April 7 his lawyer found out a special prosecutor had been appointed in the investigation. Special prosecutors are appointed in situations where “there is a significant potential for real or perceived improper influence in the administration of criminal justice.”

“I am confident that I have done nothing wrong,” said Heed's statement. “I fully support the RCMP's efforts and will be co-operating fully with the investigation.” He will continue to represent his constituents as an MLA.

Heed, a former West Vancouver police chief who entered politics as a star candidate for the B.C. Liberals, was first elected in June.

Heed is the third solicitor general in a row to resign under a cloud. John van Dongen stepped down after his record of driving infractions became public during the 2009 election and former Chilliwack mayor John Les moved to the back benches in 2008 after it was revealed a special prosecutor had been appointed in a matter related to land deals while Les was mayor. The results of that investigation still have not been announced.

Update: The B.C. government has announced that attorney general Michael de Jong will act as the minister of public safety and solicitor general.

Andrew MacLeod is The Tyee’s Legislative Bureau Chief in Victoria. Reach him here.

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