CANADALAND has learned that former CBC employee Roberto Verì, the only person who has come forward to say he witnessed Jian Ghomeshi sexually abuse a woman, has refused to participate in CBC’s internal investigation of the disgraced host. Verì rejected a request from lawyer Janice Rubin to provide evidence, because, Verì says, he has no faith in the legitimacy of her CBC-commissioned investigation. He has however been interviewed by the police and will provide testimony in court if he is asked.

Roberto Verì came forward last November on an episode of CANADALAND, revealing that when he was working as a producer for CBC’s Q during the show’s early days (2009-2010) he saw Ghomeshi brazenly assault a female colleague in the workplace (Kathryn Borel, who has since come forward herself).

“…she was leaned over her desk, he came up behind her and humped her… He drove his pelvis into her buttocks (with a) big smile on his face.”

Ghomeshi knew Verì was watching as he abused Borel, Verì recalled.

Roberto Verì has provided a copy of his reply to Janice Rubin’s request to CANADALAND. It reads as follows:

Ms.Rubin I’m going to decline. Given the parameters of your investigation, I doubt anything will change at the Corpse. I asked around and talked to others you spoke to, and while they thought you were great they also thought there was no chance that the internal investigation could incite any sort of positive change and specifically help young women who work there. The Brass have already picked out people to let slowly twist in the wind, ducked-and-covered and gone into spin. And not for nothing but I also feel like talking to you is pro-bono trouble-shooting consulting. I’ll wait for the Crown Inquiry to speak up. Good luck.

CANADALAND has previously detailed the limited scope of Janice Rubin’s investigation. CBC employees are not required to participate, and their union has warned them that they could be disciplined if they do participate. The investigation has no specific mandate to interview or scrutinize CBC management, and the full results of the investigation will never be publicly released.

In early January the CBC put two senior executives, Chris Boyce and Todd Spencer, on involuntary leave while Rubin’s investigation progresses. The CBC has provided no details as to the reasons why the executives were forced to leave, beyond that the decision was related to the Ghomeshi investigation.

CANADALAND has learned that both Boyce and Spencer are being paid while on leave.