'IT'S TIME FOR DEMOCRATS TO PLAY HARDBALL': TV host Chris Matthews urges Democrats to resist Mitch McConnell after Justice Kennedy announces retirement

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  • MSNBC host Chris Matthews sounded the alarm for Democrats after Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy announced he would retire on Wednesday.
  • Matthews referenced Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s move in 2016 to stall President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, Judge Merrick Garland.
  • “Democrats owe it to their party, their principles, and to their own survival, to do to Mitch what Mitch did to them,” Matthews said. “If this strikes anyone as a manifesto from me, so be it. But it is in truth, a statement of political reality.”

MSNBC host Chris Matthews sounded the alarm for Democrats and urged them to resist Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s campaign after Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy announced he would retire on Wednesday.

“It’s time for Democrats to play hardball,” Matthews said during his opening monologue Wednesday night. “There are times to fight and this is one of them.”

“If the Democrats in the US Senate allow President Trump to pack the Supreme Court with a 5-4 majority for the next 30 years, it’s not something the progressive Democratic voter will soon forget.”

Matthews referenced McConnell’s move in 2016 to stall President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, Judge Merrick Garland. McConnell claimed that waiting for the next president to take office was the prudent move.

“The next justice could fundamentally alter the direction of the Supreme Court and have a profound impact on our country, so of course the American people should have a say in the court’s direction,” McConnell said in 2016.

The political maneuver paid off once Trump took office and chose Judge Neil Gorsuch, a historically conservative judge, to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia.

McConnell “mocked the Democrats” by refusing to hold a hearing for Judge Garland, according to Matthews, who advised Democrats to apply the same tactic.

“Democrats owe it to their party, their principles, and to their own survival to do to Mitch what Mitch did to them,” Matthews said. “If this strikes anyone as a manifesto from me, so be it. But it is in truth, a statement of political reality.”

Justice Kennedy, 82, announced he would retire from the bench on July 31 after serving since 1988. He is the longest-serving justice to sit on the Supreme Court.

“It has been the greatest honor and privilege to serve our nation in the federal judiciary for 43 years, 30 of those years on the Supreme Court,” Kennedy said in a statement.

Justice Kennedy, who was appointed by President Ronald Reagan, has been viewed as a conservative justice with a few progressive opinions.

“Hopefully, we’re going to pick somebody who will be as outstanding,” Trump said to reporters after the announcement. “He is a very spectacular man. Really a spectacular man.”

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SEE ALSO: Justice Kennedy announces retirement, setting Trump up to reshape the Supreme Court for years to come

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Bhopal: Car-borne attackers try to run over criminal lawyer – Free Press Journal

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Bhopal: A criminal lawyer was allegedly attacked upon while he was riding his two-wheeler on Thursday night. The attackers allegedly tried to run over their car over him, however, he escaped. The lawyer suffered a leg fracture in the incident.

According to Shahjahanabad police, complainant Mohammad Shafique has identified his attackers as his landlord Hamza. Shafique is a resident of Sunrise Colony at Idgah Hills. He has taken up a flat on rent in the colony. He is a criminal lawyer and practices in the court. He told police that he has a dispute with Hamja, the owner of his rented flat where he resides.

Police said that Shafique was heading towards Budhwara on his scooter around 7:52 pm when Hamja and one other person came on Verna car and waylaid him. The lawyer lost his balance and fell on the ground. The driver allegedly tried to run the car over him, however, he escaped. The attackers then drove away.

The lawyer siffered a fracture as his leg came under the wheels. He was taken to Fracture hospital where he is undergoing treatment. Police have booked the accused under relevant Sections and looking for them. Police have also seized the car used in the incident, the car owner, however, claimed that he has no links with accused Hamja. He said that the car was driven by his driver Abdullah. He has denied knowing Hamja, cops are now looking for CCTV footage to identify the accused.

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A former Pixar employee wrote a scathing column criticizing the company's culture of 'open sexism'

FILE PHOTO: John Lasseter, Chief Creative Officer of Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios, speaks during the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Michigan, U.S. on January 8, 2017.  REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

  • A former Pixar employee wrote a column for Variety criticizing the “open sexism” of the film company’s corporate environment under Pixar cofounder John Lasseter.
  • In her column, Cassandra Smolcic, a former graphic designer at Pixar, said she personally experienced sexual harassment over her five years of employment with the company, from Lasseter, her unnamed former department head, and other male coworkers.

A former Pixar employee has written a column for Variety criticizing the “open sexism” of the film company’s corporate environment under the leadership of Pixar cofounder and former chief John Lasseter. 

Disney announced earlier this month that Lasseter would depart the company at the end of this year. Lasseter took a six-month sabbatical in November shortly after The Hollywood Reporter published a report on allegations of Lasseter’s inappropriate workplace behavior with his employees, which included “grabbing, kissing, [and] making comments about physical attributes.”

In her column for Variety, Cassandra Smolcic, a former graphic designer at Pixar, said that Lasseter’s “open sexism” had the effect of “emboldening others to act like frat boys in just about any campus setting” at the company.

Smolcic wrote that she personally experienced sexual harassment over her five years of employment with Pixar, from Lasseter, her unnamed former department head, and other men at the company. She said her harassment included “many unwelcome, objectifying interactions” and a physical groping from one male coworker. 

“Just after starting on ‘Cars 2,’ I was told by a superior that I would be uninvited from all our weekly art department meetings because Lasseter ‘has a hard time controlling himself’ around young women,” Smolcic wrote. 

Smolcic described how “management teams across the studio were well known for cleaning up the messes of powerful male superiors, regardless of their poor behavior or challenging leadership styles,” while Pixar’s “few female leads lacked backing and basic respect from the institution and the masses.”

Smolcic said she left the company at 30 after being “physically and mentally burnt out after years of bumping up against the glass ceiling” at the company.

Smolcic closed her column by praising Pixar’s decision to move forward with Jennifer Lee and Pete Docter as chief creative officers at Disney Animation and Pixar, respectively.

“But dismantling John’s legacy will take more than just replacing a single executive, because such deeply ingrained biases require deliberate, conscientious effort to identify and dismantle. Disney and Pixar must recognize that women and underrepresented minorities are just as capable, talented, complex, and dimensional as the white fraternity of men who have monopolized animation thus far,” she wrote.

Disney did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider on the matter.

Read Smolcic’s full column at Variety.

SEE ALSO: The co-founder of Pixar is leaving Disney, months after allegations of inappropriate behavior

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Annapolis shooting suspect "wanted to get revenge," lawyer for harassed woman says – CBS News

Investigators say the suspect in The Capital newspaper shootingJarrod Ramos, had a longstanding grudge against the newspaper. Ramos sued after it reported accurately on his guilty plea to charges of harassing a woman he went to high school with. His defamation case was dismissed. Authorities say the 38-year-old, armed with a shotgun, intentionally targeted the newspaper in a shooting that left five dead. 

CBS News’ Chip Reid spoke to Brennan McCarthy, the attorney who represented the woman Ramos harassed. He said Ramos tormented his client for years. 

“He was as angry an individual as I have ever seen,” McCarthy said. “She lost her job because of this individual….He is malevolent. He forwarded a letter to her employer, basically stating that she was bipolar and a drunkard which is ridiculous.”

McCarthy said the harassment and stalking began around 2009, after they became friends on Facebook. In 2011, she took him to court, where he pleaded guilty to criminal harassment and was placed on 18-months’ probation. Five days later, the Capital Gazette wrote a story titled, “Jarrod wants to be your friend.” It outlined Ramos’ alleged erratic behavior and included alleged emails he sent, telling McCarthy’s client: “go hang yourself,” “you’re going to need a restraining order now,” and “you can’t make me stop.”

“Mr. Ramos was obsessively angry about this particular story,” McCarthy said.

Ramos sued the paper for defamation in 2012. The case was dismissed in 2015 on appeal. According to court documents, the judge said, “There is nothing” to prove “anything that was published” was in fact false. 

“I for one received what I considered to be a death threat,” said Tom Marquardt, who was The Capital’s executive editor at the time of the article. He said he went to police about Ramos’ threat, but was told nothing could be done.

“I feared for my life, I feared for my family’s life and I feared for my staff’s life,” Marquardt said.

McCarthy said on Thursday, when he heard about the shooting at The Capital newspaper, he immediately thought of Ramos.

“He wanted to get revenge,” McCarthy said. “I knew he did it….It was inevitable. He was going to do something violent. The only question was, who would he get first.”

McCarthy said he spoke to his client after the shooting and she said she is still scared for her life even though he is behind bars. 

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Ed Sheeran sued for $100 million, accused of copying Marvin Gaye's 'Let's Get It On'

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  • Ed Sheeran is facing a $100 million lawsuit accusing him of copying Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On” for his 2014 song “Thinking Out Loud,” TMZ reports.
  • Sheeran was also sued in 2016 over “Thinking Out Loud” by the family of Ed Townsend, a cowriter of “Let’s Get It On.”
  • Sheeran responded to the 2016 suit in documents obtained by TMZ last week. He reportedly claimed that similar elements in “Let’s Get It On” were in the public domain and unprotectable.

Ed Sheeran is facing a $100 million lawsuit accusing the singer-songwriter of copying Marvin Gaye’s 1973 hit “Let’s Get It On” on his 2014 song “Thinking Out Loud,” TMZ reported.

The suit was filed by Structured Asset Sales, a company that owns one-third of the copyright to “Let’s Get It On.”

“According to the lawsuit, Sheeran’s song has the same melody, rhythms, harmonies, drums, bassline, backing chorus, tempo, syncopation, and looping as ‘Let’s Get it On,'” TMZ reported.

Sheeran was also sued over “Thinking Out Loud” in 2016. The family of Ed Townsend, a cowriter on Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On,” sued Sheeran, arguing that “Thinking Out Loud” lifted the melody, harmony, and other rhythmic components from Gaye’s track.

Sheeran responded to the 2016 suit in documents obtained by TMZ last week. He reportedly claimed that the chord progressions and drum patterns of the two songs were “extremely commonplace” and that similar elements in “Let’s Get It On” were in the public domain and unprotectable.

“Thinking Out Loud” peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 2014 and has been certified “diamond” by the RIAA for streaming-equivalent sales of over 10 million copies. “Let’s Get It On” topped the Billboard singles chart in 1973 and is certified platinum by the RIAA.

Sheeran’s representatives have not responded to a request for comment from Business Insider on the latest suit.

Listen to “Let’s Get It On” and “Thinking Out Loud” below:

SEE ALSO: The 50 best-selling music artists of all time

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Joe Mantegna Lands Historic Hollywood Home (EXCLUSIVE) – Variety

Widely known for his silver screen role in “The Godfather: Part III” and, for the past 10-plus years, as an abrasive FBI profiler on the long-running “Criminal Minds” TV series, Joe Mantegna has added to his bulky residential property portfolio with the not quite $1.3 million purchase of a showbiz-pedigreed Spanish bungalow in the Hollywood Hills.

Built in 1926 and extensively remodeled with two bedrooms and two bathrooms in a wee bit more than 1,700 square feet, the white-stucco and red-tile-roofed bungalow is, as noted in marketing materials, rumored to once have been the hideaway of movie pioneer Jack Warner as well as seven-time Oscar-winning makeup artist Rick Baker, “The Great Gatsby” actress Kathryn Leigh Scott and an unnamed Playboy Bunny.

The slender but voluminous living room has a Spanish tile-accented corner fireplace and a soaring, 16-foot exposed-wood ceiling; the spacious dining room, completely open to a kitchen equipped with rustic faux-distressed cabinetry, features a circular mosaic floor medallion. The master suite, a multi-room combination of two former bedrooms on the upper floor, opens to both a private terrace and a house-wide balcony that overlooks the small, private, wedge-shaped backyard.

In addition to a three-story beachfront house in Oxnard, Calif., he quietly acquired in 2016 for $4.9 million, the versatile actor, producer and firearm enthusiast, a 1984 Tony winner for “Glengarry Glen Ross,” since 1991 the voice of Fat Tony on “The Simpsons” and a producer/host for several gun-related docu-series on The Outdoor Channel, owns at least half a dozen other residential properties in Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley, most of them modest and presumably purchased as investments.

listing photos: Keller Williams

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Trump's personal attorney is 'willing to give info' about the President – CNN

“He knows a lot of things about the President and he’s not averse to talking in the right situation,” one of Cohen’s New York friends who is in touch with him told CNN. “If they want information on Trump, he’s willing to give it.”
Cohen is planning to hire Guy Petrillo, a former chief of the criminal division of the US attorney’s office in Manhattan and an experienced trial lawyer, a source familiar confirmed. The source said all the paperwork and retainer may not have been finalized just yet.
The shift in legal strategy and signals of potential cooperation with investigators come as Cohen feels increasingly isolated from the President, whom he has been famously loyal to for more than a decade. Last week, CNN reported Cohen has indicated a willingness to cooperate to alleviate pressure on himself and his family.
“He feels let down by him and isolated by him,” another friend of Cohen’s told CNN. Cohen has famously said he would take a bullet for Trump and he has fashioned himself as Trump’s “fixer,” willing to help handle situations quietly. Cohen facilitated a $130,000 payment to porn star Stormy Daniels weeks before the 2016 election to keep quiet her allegations of an affair a decade earlier with the then-candidate. The White House has denied any affair.
The mounting pressure on Cohen and his family since the April FBI raid of his home, hotel room and office has been weighing on him and his family, sources say. Cohen has not been charged with any wrongdoing but his attorneys have been combing through 3.7 million files and hundreds of encrypted messages that were swept up in the raid.
Several defense lawyers say that if Cohen is ultimately indicted, they don’t expect him to be charged with any wrongdoing until the government completes its review of the evidence seized in the raid. The court-appointed special master overseeing the review of material for attorney-client privileged information said it could be completed as soon as June 25.
Giuliani says Michael Cohen is not cooperating with federal investigatorsGiuliani says Michael Cohen is not cooperating with federal investigators
According to another Cohen friend, whether he decides to cooperate with federal investigators would depend on what is ultimately in any indictment. If the indictment is deemed relatively less serious than expected, for example, it’s possible that Cohen would choose to plead guilty. CNN reported on Friday that Cohen had not yet met with prosecutors to discuss a potential deal, and it’s unclear whether either side is seeking one.
“Anything is a possibility,” the person said.
Another source confirmed that Cohen and Petrillo had met to discuss taking Cohen on as a client. Petrillo and the Trump lawyer handling Cohen document review have not responded to requests for comment. Cohen’s current attorney did not immediately respond for comment.
Vanity Fair was first to report that Cohen has hired Petrillo.
NYT: Michael Cohen's 'taxi king' business partner to cooperate with governmentNYT: Michael Cohen's 'taxi king' business partner to cooperate with government
Petrillo is a well-respected former prosecutor who has ties to the same US attorney’s office that is investigating Cohen. He was an assistant US attorney for the Southern District of New York from 1990 until 1997. While there he overlapped with Robert Khuzami, the deputy US attorney overseeing the Cohen raid.
After a decade in private practice, Petrillo returned to the US attorney’s office in January 2008 and, until October 2009, was chief of the criminal division, where he had broad oversight of all investigations. He was recruited by Michael Garcia, who was nominated by Republican President George W. Bush.
Petrillo left government and set up his own boutique law firm focusing on representing individuals under criminal investigation.
He partnered with Joshua Klein, an experienced white-collar attorney who worked 13 years in the US attorney’s office investigating high-profile financial fraud, and Nelson Boxer, a former mob prosecutor from the same office.
The lawyers are experienced handling high-profile matters. Petrillo and Klein are representing amfAR, the AIDS charity, in the investigation by the Manhattan US attorney’s office into transactions involving the charity and Harvey Weinstein.
Petrillo and Klein also represent a former trader who was recently acquitted of eight charges of securities fraud and wire fraud. The jury deadlocked on one count of conspiracy, and a retrial is set for July. It isn’t clear if that is a factor in taking on Cohen as a client.

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Newly unsealed court filing shows Paul Manafort was more indebted to Putin ally Oleg Deripaska than previously known

Paul Manafort

  • A newly unsealed court filing shows Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska loaned Paul Manafort $10 million.
  • Manafort has a long and complicated financial history with Deripaska, who is closely tied to the Kremlin.
  • Manafort was the chairman of President Donald Trump’s campaign, and he offered to give Deripaska “private briefings” about the campaign in 2016 in what may have been an effort to resolve his debt.

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A newly unsealed court filing shows that Paul Manafort received a hefty loan from Oleg Deripaska, a Russian oligarch with close ties to the Kremlin.

Manafort is the former chairman of President Donald Trump’s campaign. Special counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating Russia’s election interference, has charged Manafort in two indictments with dozens of counts related to tax and bank fraud, obstruction of justice, conspiracy, false statements, and failure to register as a foreign agent.

Manafort recently lost motions seeking to dismiss each of the two cases against him — one in Virginia and one in Washington, DC. He is currently incarcerated in Northern Neck Regional Jail in Virginia.

The document unsealed on Wednesday is a July 2017 application for a warrant to search Manafort’s home in Virginia, Reuters reported. In an affidavit attached to the application, an FBI agent said that while reviewing tax returns for a company Manafort and his wife own, he discovered that Deripaska loaned Manafort $10 million. It’s unclear when the loan was made.

Deripaska is a longtime associate of Manafort’s, and the two men have a complicated financial history.

The affidavit disclosed that Deripaska financially supported Manafort’s consulting work in Ukraine when it began in 2005 and in 2006. 

Deripaska and Manafort also worked together on a lobbying project in the US in 2006, and Deripaska signed a $10 million annual contract with Manafort for the deal, which Manafort said would “greatly benefit the Putin Government.”

When Manafort joined the Trump campaign ten years later, he owed Deripaska close to $20 million, according to legal complaints Deripaska’s lawyers filed in the Cayman Islands and New York.

Manafort’s debt to Deripaska attracted scrutiny last year, after The Atlantic published several emails appearing to show Manafort using his elevated role in the Trump campaign to resolve his conflict with Deripaska.

Manafort reportedly wrote an email to his associate, the former Russian-Ukrainian intelligence operative Konstantin Kilimnik, offering to give Deripaska “private briefings” about the campaign. Kilimnik was indicted by Mueller this month.

“I assume you have shown our friends my media coverage, right?” Manafort reportedly wrote to Kilimnik.

“Absolutely,” replied Kilimnik. “Every article.”

“How do we use to get whole,” Manafort responded. “Has OVD operation seen?”

Former intelligence officials told Business Insider that Manafort was likely offering the briefings in an effort to repay his debt to Deripaska. Investigators have concluded that “OVD” was a reference to Deripaska’s full name: Oleg Vladimirovich Deripaska.

Kilimnik reportedly told Manafort in a later email that he had been “sending everything to Victor, who has been forwarding the coverage directly to OVD.” Victor was a senior aide to Deripaska, according to The Atlantic.

“Frankly, the coverage has been much better than Trump’s,” Kilimnik wrote. “In any case it will hugely enhance your reputation no matter what happens.”

On July 7, 2016, Manafort wrote to Kilimnik, “If he needs private briefings, we can accommodate.”

Manafort and Kilimnik met at least twice during the campaign — once in May 2016 and once in August.

Three days before the August meeting, Kilimnik wrote in an email to Manafort that he had “met today with the guy who gave you your biggest black caviar jar several years ago,” a reference to Deripaska’s previous loans to Manafort. “We spent about 5 hours talking about his story, and I have several important messages from him to you.”

Manafort has said he and Kilimnik discussed the Trump campaign and the recent hack of the Democratic National Committee during the August 2, 2016 meeting. Kilimnik said they did not discuss the campaign, but talked about “current news” and “unpaid bills.”

Meanwhile, hours after their meeting, a private jet linked to Deripaska landed in Newark, New Jersey, close to where Manafort and Kilimnik met. It was in the US for less than 24 hours, and the trip has now caught the eye of congressional Trump-Russia investigators.

Deripaska’s representatives confirmed to Vice News that his jet flew to New Jersey that month, but said Deripaska was not on board, that the trip had nothing to do with Manafort’s offer, and that Deripaska never received the offer.

SEE ALSO: John Bolton just did a complete 180 on his Russia stance after meeting with Putin

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Air Canada passengers interviewed on plane were 'unlawfully detained' criminal lawyer says – Winnipeg Free Press

Passengers kept on an airplane at the Winnipeg airport for more than an hour to be individually interviewed about a missing flight attendant’s passport were "unlawfully detained" by police, legal experts suggest.

When an Air Canada crew member’s passport went missing during a domestic flight from Montreal to Winnipeg Sunday night, passengers were asked to come forward with any information. When the plane touched down at the Winnipeg Richardson International Airport and the document was still missing, two RCMP officers came on board to take statements from each person on the jet. Some passengers waited to be interrogated for at least 90 minutes after the plane landed, said passenger Jonah Levy, an 18-year-old Montreal native.

"It’s a very interesting situation … I certainly think the police acted outside of their lawful power and authority," said Joshua Rogala, a criminal defence lawyer in Winnipeg, during a phone interview Wednesday afternoon.

"In detaining all the passengers on the plane without the reasonable suspicion that a particular individual committed the theft, the police violated the passengers rights not to be arbitrarily detained."

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Passengers kept on an airplane at the Winnipeg airport for more than an hour to be individually interviewed about a missing flight attendant’s passport were “unlawfully detained” by police, legal experts suggest.

When an Air Canada crew member’s passport went missing during a domestic flight from Montreal to Winnipeg Sunday night, passengers were asked to come forward with any information. When the plane touched down at the Winnipeg Richardson International Airport and the document was still missing, two RCMP officers came on board to take statements from each person on the jet. Some passengers waited to be interrogated for at least 90 minutes after the plane landed, said passenger Jonah Levy, an 18-year-old Montreal native.

“It’s a very interesting situation … I certainly think the police acted outside of their lawful power and authority,” said Joshua Rogala, a criminal defence lawyer in Winnipeg, during a phone interview Wednesday afternoon.

“In detaining all the passengers on the plane without the reasonable suspicion that a particular individual committed the theft, the police violated the passengers rights not to be arbitrarily detained.”

Under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, every person has the right not to be arbitrarily detained and those who are detained have a right to be informed of the reasons for their detention and their right to seek a lawyer.

The Charter also states everyone has the right to be secure against unreasonable search or seizure, which the RCMP officers breached in taking photos of the passports of all the passengers they interviewed, Rogala added.

“I certainly think the police acted outside of their lawful power and authority.” – Joshua Rogala, a criminal defence lawyer in Winnipeg

When the jet landed, crew members asked the passengers to search their seats for the missing passport, Levy said. The 18-year-old, who flew to Winnipeg for a summer camp job, said everyone searched the airplane for five minutes until they heard the attendant over the speaker again. An Air Canada attendant then asked passengers to co-operate with police while officers interrogated each passenger, he said. One by one, each passenger was questioned and the Mounties took down their personal information, Levy said, adding he gave an officer his home address and phone number.

The officers also snapped photos of passenger passports and identification, said both Levy and passenger Ruth Swan — who spoke to the Free Press about the incident on Monday.

Levy said his friend, who was on the plane with him, called his dad, who practices law, to ask if there was anything they could do at the time. His friend’s dad didn’t know, Levy said.

“When the police officers stepped into the plane, my heart skipped a beat. It was like ‘Oh my god, what’s going to happen now. Is someone going to get arrested?’ I pictured something from a viral video, someone getting dragged off a plane.

“It started getting really hot and that’s when it kind of felt like I was in a cage.”

A media relations officer said RCMP were alerted about the missing passport on an inbound flight from Montreal around 8:30 p.m. Sunday.

The investigation is still underway because the passport hasn’t been found, RCMP spokeswoman Tara Seel wrote in a statement to the Free Press Wednesday. Seel wrote that the situation was “unique” and officers “responded appropriately.”

“Police needed to speak to everyone on the plane regarding culpability in relation to the theft of a passport, and that was communicated to the passengers.”

Those who needed to depart were “dealt with and de-planed immediately,” Seel added.

Gabor Lukacs, an air travel passenger activist, said he’s never heard of this sort of situation before.

“I don’t think detaining the whole plane was a proportionate action,” he said. “This wasn’t the first time something’s gone missing on an aircraft.”

Dan Manning, a criminal defence lawyer in Winnipeg, said he doesn’t think police acted appropriately either; he doesn’t understand why police wouldn’t have let the passengers off the plane and question them elsewhere in the terminal. That noted, Manning said he doesn’t think the situation was anything more than police “preserving the peace.” The passengers could’ve declined to speak, he added.

“The police are entitled to ask civilians questions, and that’s not a detention in itself.”

However, by Air Canada and the RCMP acting in tandem, Manning said he can imagine the passengers would have felt like it was a detainment.

“And it sounds like the airline was happy to subject their passengers to police questioning,” he said. Between calling the police and making the passengers wait on the plane for nearly two hours, Manning said it was simply “very poor customer service.”

Lukacs, the industry activist, said he also questions if Air Canada would have taken the same measures had a passenger been the one to lose their passport.

“There’s an appearance of two laws: one for Air Canada and one for the average passenger, and that would be wrong.”

Air Canada spokesperson Peter Fitzpatrick said the airline could not provide any additional comment Wednesday because the situation has become a police matter.

maggie.macintosh@freepress.mb.ca

Twitter: @macintoshmaggie

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