Update 1:23 p.m.: It appears Pickton’s book has been removed from Amazon’s website.
VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – They’ve already endured unimaginable heartache, but now families of the victims of one of Canada’s most notorious serial killers are facing even more pain.
A book written by Robert Pickton is for sale on Amazon, and that has family members calling for it to be taken down.
A change.org petition asking Amazon to remove the book is growing quickly.
But as far as the letter of the law is concerned, it won’t be as easy to stop sales as it would be in other jurisdictions.
The U.S. has laws forbidding convicts from profiting off their own crimes.
Ontario has similar legislation but there’s nothing like that here in BC.
“There is no provincial legislation in British Columbia that specifically prohibits an inmate from profiting off writing about their own crimes. We know there’s the Son of Sam law in the United States and there is provincial legislation in Ontario,” says Vancouver criminal lawyer Michael Shapray.
Shapray stresses he hasn’t read the book so he has no way of knowing for sure what’s in it. But he says there are circumstances in which a book’s sales could be blocked for legal reasons.
“If for instance there is a breach of a publication ban from his trial, that could be an issue. But of course again, if it’s an American publisher, how does a Canadian court deal with that book being removed. So it’s a complex issue,” says Shapray.
According to reports, Pickton had the manuscript smuggled out of prison.