Disgraced judge wants to return to law
CALGARY — A former judge who asked why a rape complainant didn’t resist by keeping her knees together says he’d like to rejoin the legal profession, telling a Law Society of Alberta reinstatement hearing that he still has a great deal to contribute.
“I have five or 10 good years in me,” Robin Camp, 65, told the three-member panel Tuesday.
Camp said he has no interest in criminal law, but hopes to go into corporate, commercial, construction, oil and gas or environmental practice.
“I hope to build a practice in Alberta. Canada is my home,” said Camp, who came to Canada from South Africa nearly two decades ago.
However, he said he is also exploring the possibility of setting up shop in the Persian Gulf region.
He said he does not believe he’d need to be a law society member to do so, but that it would help.
Camp stepped down from Federal Court in March following a Canadian Judicial Council recommendation that he be removed from the bench.
Court transcripts from the 2014 sexual assault trial show that Camp — a provincial court judge in Calgary at the time — called the complainant “the accused” numerous times and asked her why she didn’t resist by keeping her knees together.
Camp found the accused, Alexander Wagar, not guilty, but the Appeal Court ordered a new trial in which he was again acquitted.
He said being publicly shamed for his remarks has not been a pleasant experience.
“I was a caricature. Many people in Canada reviled me.”
But he said the training and counselling he received since have shaped him into a better, more sensitive person.
“I learned I’m not as clever as I thought I was,” he said. “I learned I am not as kind a person as I always imagined I was.”
After he stepped down from the bench, Camp spent some time consulting for The Rebel, a far-right website.
Executive director Don Thompson said he’s expecting written submissions to be filed within the next month or so and for a decision to be rendered at least a month or two after that.