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Justin Ling

Host, Uncover: The Village Podcast
Investigative Journalist

Bio

Justin Ling is a freelance journalist who specializes in covering stories untold, oversimplified, misunderstood, and often missed by the media. He got his start in community journalism in Nova Scotia, before working for a local online news start-up in Montreal. While there, he stumbled upon the existence of a Greek neo-Nazi party quietly fundraising within Quebec, covered civil unrest amid a province-wide student strike, and was even arrested by the city’s riot cops. From there, he moved to Ottawa, joining the Parliamentary Press Gallery and joined VICE News as their Canadian political reporter, where he uncovered a massive surveillance effort by Canadian intelligence agencies on Indigenous protesters, revealed the existence of an ill-fated infiltration of a university communist group by Canadian spies, reported on major constitutional issues with federal legislation, and turned the government’s treatment of the press into a national issue. 

 

Since he arrived in Toronto, Ling has proved how a major cellphone manufacturer handed over its global decryption key to Canadian law enforcement, documented the existence of a previously-secret watchlist of travellers across the U.S-Canada border, and detailed an extensive lobbying effort in Washington, D.C. by the Trudeau government to preserve its most crucial trade deal. While there, Ling became one of the most effective users of Canada’s Access to Information system, using it to consistently break major stories. 

 

Today, Ling is working on a book profiling how eight men disappeared from Toronto’s Gay Village, and how police, for eight years, failed to catch the man they believe responsible for those deaths. The book stems from him popular CBC podcast, Uncover: The Village, where Ling sheds a light on these unsolved murders.

 

He is also investigating Russian meddling in Canadian politics, a project that has taken him from inside the headquarters of the Department of National Defence to a NATO training base in Latvia. His work has appeared in the Globe & Mail, National Post, Maclean’s, VICE News, BuzzFeed News, and he has appeared on CBC, CTV, Global, CNN, the BBC, and a host of other outlets.

The Uncover podcast series is now on season 3!

TOPICS

Data/Information

In the five-odd years Justin Ling has been covering federal politics, a revolving door of politicians have promised open data, open information, and open communication with the media. None of these politicians have succeeded. It has become incumbent on journalists, activists, academics, lawyers, lobbyists, and industry to find their own ways to ferret out information from Ottawa.From the policy of how information is released to the techniques needed to dislodge secrets from the government’s hands, there are few journalists in the country more familiar with the process than Ling.

National Security/Policing/Surveillance

The litany of ways in which state and non-state actors can keep tabs on you, exfiltrate your data, and monitor your communications is dizzying, and public understanding of the techniques and threats is lagging way behind their usage and sophistication. From the Islamic State’s online caliphate to the increasing radicalization of the Incel movement, how do these groups operate and recruit? And for countries in the Five Eyes intelligence community, are they too willing to trample over our privacy to catch them? Justin Ling will explore and expand on these questions.

Canadian Politics

The litany of ways in which state and non-state actors can keep tabs on you, exfiltrate your data, and monitor your communications is dizzying, and public understanding of the techniques and threats is lagging way behind their usage and sophistication. From the Islamic State’s online caliphate to the increasing radicalization of the Incel movement, how do these groups operate and recruit? And for countries in the Five Eyes intelligence community, are they too willing to trample over our privacy to catch them? Justin Ling will explore and expand on these questions.

Uncover: The Village Podcast

From 1975 to 2018, Bruce McArthur had tormented Toronto’s Gay Village. Men would disappear from the neighbourhood but police insisted there was no evidence of foul play. In January 2018, police finally arrested Bruce McArthur for the murders of eight men. They are now re-investigating dozens of unsolved murders. Ling covered this story for over five years, and he is now shedding light on these unsolved and long-forgotten murders. 

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