Edmonton-Southwest MLA Thomas Dang (with glasses) laughs along with his colleagues during an introductory meeting with all newly elected MLAs in Edmonton on Tuesday, May 12, 2015. Dang has left the NDP caucus after reporting he is involved in a criminal investigation.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Amber Bracken

Alberta NDP politician steps aside while RCMP investigate computer privacy breach

Alberta NDP politician steps aside while RCMP investigate computer privacy breach

EDMONTON — A member of the Alberta Opposition has left caucus after reporting he is involved in a criminal investigation.

NDP Leader Rachel Notley says Edmonton-South legislature member Thomas Dang has stepped down as per caucus policy.

Notley says she believes the investigation is related to anecdotal reports that surfaced in September about Albertans being able to get access to the private health information of others through glitches on the province’s COVID-19 website.

She says Dang visited the government’s website at the time and called Alberta Health about his concerns.

Notley says Mounties recently searched Dang’s home.

RCMP say in a release that its cybercrime team executed a warrant at an Edmonton home on Tuesday but did not name Dang, noting that no arrests or charges have been laid.

The release said a criminal investigation started in November after it received information about suspicious activity related to the access of private information of vaccination records.

It described the investigation as a priority and involved a significant volume of digital evidence that will take time to complete.

Dang could not be reached.

“We’re not sure of the specifics of the current investigation,” Notley said Tuesday.

“Either way, however, as this matter is now under active police investigation, Thomas has offered to step aside from our caucus, and I have agreed to that request.

“Our caucus has a long-standing policy that members under active police investigation will not sit in the caucus, and Thomas understands this.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 21, 2021.

The Canadian Press

Alberta Politics