Bank of Canada secret documents stolen

Wed Nov 17, 2010 5:02pm EST
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By Louise Egan

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Classified Bank of Canada documents were stolen from Governor Mark Carney's car earlier this month but none of the missing papers contained information that could move markets, a bank spokesman said on Wednesday.

About one week after meeting with other G20 finance officials in Korea, Carney was in Montreal for private meetings when someone smashed in the window of the bank's locked, official vehicle and removed a bag.

"The car was broken into. Essentially the window was smashed and a bag containing some personal effects and some documents was stolen from the car," said central bank spokesman Jeremy Harrison.

Two other recent security breaches by government ministers have been politically embarrassing and career-limiting. Former Foreign Affairs Minister Maxime Bernier was forced to step down in 2008 after leaving classified briefing papers at his girlfriend's house.

There were no immediate signs that Carney, a former Goldman Sachs investment banker who is very highly regarded in government, would be reprimanded.

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty suggested Carney held no responsibility in the incident.

"He's a victim of a crime and that's an unfortunate thing," Flaherty told reporters.

Police confirmed they had recovered Carney's bag but neither they nor the bank would say whether the documents had been found.   Continued...