What motivated the laying of charges against Stephen Williams?
The lawyer for the Mahaffy and French families, Tim Danson, played a significant role in both Mr. Williamsí arrests and prosecutions.
The Director of the Crown Law Office (criminal) (now the Deputy Minister) Murray Segal and his wife (who contrary to Ministry policy works for her husband) Michel Fairburn ordered both arrests.
As Mr. Williamsí lawyer Edward Greenspan pointed out to the press shortly after his second arrest, because Mr. Segal and Ms. Fairburn are featured in both Mr. Williamsí books - and not in a particularly flattering light - as were many of the police officers assigned to investigate him, including the acting deputy chief of the Niagara Regional Police Service Gary Wayne Beaulieu, Sergeant Richard Cizsek and Detective Sergeant Cliff Sexton - neither Mr. Segal nor Ms. Fairburn should have ever been permitted to play any role in his arrests and prosecutions.
Traditionally in a democracy breaches of court orders and publication bans are dealt with outside of the court room. For example, the individual and his/her publishers (media outlets) are warned, an apology is given with an undertaking to fix the mistake and be more vigilant in the future, and the matter is dropped.
Neither Mr. Williams or his publishers, or their respective lawyers were ever approached about any mistakes that may have been made in either Invisible Darkness or Karla or on Mr. Williamsí web site.
The discrepancy between the seriousness of the alleged offences and the relentless determination and magnitude of the eight-year-long assault on Mr. Williams by the authorities gave the appearance, at least to Mr. Williams and his defense lawyers, of a vendetta - both on the part of the police and those individuals in the Ministry of the Attorney General that were profiled in the books.
The fact that there were breaches and errors in other books written by other individuals who were in the employ of large media organizations and many of those organizations were in possession of everything that Mr. Williams had in his archive - and much more beside - and the fact that those individuals and organizations were never assailed or even notified does much to reinforce the verisimilitude of this impression: It would appear that the Ministry and the police chose Mr. Williams precisely because he exposed certain information that the authorities wanted kept quiet and he was independent of any major media organization and therefore vulnerable.