Released on April 21, 2010
Justice Minister and Attorney General Don Morgan today announced that the Government of Saskatchewan has received a cheque for $5,000 from Colin Thatcher, as well as a copy of a letter to his publisher, Toronto-based ECW Press Ltd., instructing them to forward all future royalty payments to the Minister of Finance.
"We are satisfied that the new Act has passed its first test," Morgan said. "Nobody should be able to profit from the victimization and distress of others."
Thatcher had been ordered to turn over all his profits from the sale of his book "Final Appeal: Anatomy of a Frame" to the Government of Saskatchewan. The Profits of Criminal Notoriety Act forbids a person from profiting from the recounting of their crimes. In a decision handed down March 15, 2010, Court of Queen's Bench Justice Ted Zarzeczny ruled that the book fit the Act's definition of the "recounting of a crime" and, therefore, Thatcher could not profit from the sale of this book.
In accordance with the Act, funds will be held in trust by the Minister of Finance until two years from the date that they were initially required to be paid to the government. In the Thatcher case, that is May, 2011. The Act provides several options for distribution of the funds and the government will not announce any decision about distribution until May, 2011.
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