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Toilet cam planted for ‘secrets’: lawyer

By Jane Deacon

Allan Bosomworth pleaded guilty to one count of secretly observing or recording nudity in a private place. (FILE PHOTO)

Allan Bosomworth pleaded guilty to one count of secretly observing or recording nudity in a private place. (FILE PHOTO)

The Vancouver chef who planted a camera in his restaurant’s bathroom was motivated by the thrill of “knowing someone’s secrets” — more so than sexual impulses, according to his lawyer.

“There was a desire or strong motivation of the discovery of strangers’ secrets, which resulted in a powerful excitement and exhilaration,” Maegan Richards told a B.C. Provincial Court judge Monday.

In September, Allan Bosomworth, 39, a chef and former co-owner of Gastown’s Two Chefs and a Table, pleaded guilty to one count of secretly observing or recording nudity in a private place. He was charged after it was discovered he had planted a video recording device in the restaurant’s bathroom for four days in 2012.

His lawyer is seeking a conditional discharge that would result in some probation time, but no criminal record, arguing that Bosomworth is acutely aware of the consequences should he re-offend. The impact of his offence on his personal and professional life — which has included the loss of his three businesses and his career as a chef in B.C. — has been compounded by widespread media attention, Richards argued.

Crown lawyer Ellen Leno proposed a suspended sentence with one year of probation, along with a ban on owning devices capable of recording, no contact with his former co-workers, and 60 hours of community service.

Bosomworth’s former business partner Karl Gregg — the pair owned two restaurants and a butcher shop together — read a victim impact statement, saying he was in shock for several days after discovering the recording device in his restaurant’s bathroom while cleaning. The co-ed restroom was the restaurant’s only facility, used by patrons and staff.

He estimated the business took a $55,000 hit in sales alone, along with additional legal and public relations costs. In October 2013, the word “rat” was written across his front door, adding to existing emotional stress, he told the courts.

Bosomworth is expected to return to court in January for sentencing. The offence can carry a jail sentence of up to five years.

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