Christopher Nicholson. File photo

Christopher Nicholson. File photo

Abbotsford cop pleads guilty in corruption case

Christopher Nicholson pleaded guilty to breach of trust, had other charges stayed

An Abbotsford Police officer accused of corruption has pleaded guilty to breach of trust.

Christopher Nicholson was accused of leaking information to a drug dealer, among other offences.

Jury selection for the case involving 10 charges was scheduled for Sept. 7 in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver but he entered his plea instead. The trial was originally scheduled for May 2016 but but was delayed by lengthy pre-trial procedures.

The Crown stayed the nine other charges in the case. Nicholson is scheduled for sentencing on Sept. 20.

Nicholson, who first began working with the Abbotsford Police Department (APD) in 2005, was charged in May 2013 with six counts of obstructing justice, three counts of breach of trust and one count of conspiracy to traffic a controlled substance.

In February 2015, the Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner (OPCC) announced it was looking into 148 allegations of misconduct against Nicholson and 16 other APD officers.

The OPCC said the matter stemmed from the investigation into Nicholson, and the allegations included corrupt practice, deceit and neglect of duty.

The investigation was later narrowed down to 15 officers and 137 allegations.

Then, in February of this year, the OPCC announced that it was discontinuing its investigation into all but four of the officers, and it was continuing to look into only 15 of the claims.

The agency has said it will release a report on the findings once the investigation is complete.

The OPCC does not lay criminal charges, but looks for infractions under the Police Act. Officers deemed to have committed wrongdoing face disciplinary measures ranging from a written reprimand to a suspension or firing.

He was suspended without pay from the police force as the case proceeded through the courts. A representative from the Abbotsford Police did not respond immediately to questions regarding Nicholson’s status following the guilty plea.

– with files from Vikki Hopes