The Globe and Mail is reporting that a former Toronto-area TV station was scooped up by the federal government on the prescription opioid crisis in the spring of 2016.
The station, the News Network of Toronto, is the only one in the GTA to have a full-time production team dedicated to coverage of the opioid epidemic.
As of August 15, 2016, it had been reporting on the crisis for nearly two years, according to The Globe’s reporting.
The News Network has been a critical voice in helping journalists and citizens understand the opioid issue and its impacts.
It was acquired by the United States government in September of 2017.
The company said in a statement that the sale to the United Nations and the Department of Homeland Security were unrelated to the investigation.
It said the acquisition was made to ensure the continued ability of the News to provide the best content to Canadians.
A spokesperson for the company said the company would continue to “provide high-quality coverage of all aspects of the ongoing opioid crisis.”
The station is also an official member of the Canadian Network of Journalists.
The Globe is not naming the reporter or the broadcaster in order to protect the privacy of the reporter, said an official with knowledge of the situation.
The news network declined to comment on the circumstances surrounding the sale.
The sale was made without any public notice, and no public comment was made at the time, said the spokesperson.
The federal government is currently investigating the sale, which would be a criminal offence.
As the Globe reports, the network was one of only a handful of media outlets that were not owned or operated by a Canadian corporation.
The network is a subsidiary of the Toronto-based Globe and Sun newspaper group, which has been under federal ownership since 2004.
The acquisition was first reported by the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. (CBC) In 2016, the federal and provincial governments signed a memorandum of understanding that allows the Canadian Media Foundation to operate the news station.
It’s unclear what, if any, new restrictions were placed on the station by the government or the Canadian Press Association.
The deal would give the Canadian Journalists Federation access to the News network’s news operations and would also allow the Canadian Association of Broadcasters to manage the network, which is a national broadcaster.
The Canadian Press says the news network was previously owned by Toronto-Dominion Bank and a number of other Canadian media organizations, including Rogers Communications and TVA.
In the fall of 2016, a federal investigation into the sale of the news channel was underway, CBC News has learned.
The investigation was reportedly prompted by concerns that the news outlet was not operating in compliance with the Canadian Standards Institute guidelines for the distribution of news content.
The standards state that a news outlet should not publish or broadcast a news story without the consent of the publisher.
The government also wants to see a clearer picture of how the sale is being managed and how it will be implemented, CBC reported.
The report did not say whether the sale would be subject to any sanctions.
The current network was sold for $2.6 million, CBC said.
The corporation said the news group is now part of the Global News Network, which was acquired last year by TNS, which owns CBC News.
The new network will continue to be funded by the CBC, which plans to spend roughly $1.2 billion on news programming and events this year.
The broadcaster has been struggling to keep up with demand for its news programs in the midst of the U.S. opioid crisis.
In July, it said it lost about a third of its business due to the crisis, including on-air and online.
The CBC has said it is in discussions with the federal health minister to develop a plan to ensure coverage of prescription drug use and overdoses is “fully delivered.”
The CBC and its partners have said they plan to continue providing news and current affairs programming, including a special program about a local overdose victim called The Story of a Hero.
The Story Of A Hero airs on the CBC News Network every Monday at 9 a.m. ET.