Thursday, March 30, 2006

CNN's Nancy Grace (well sort of) coming to Winnipeg!

Tansi/Good Day Folks:

Earlier today I was in Manitoba Court of Queen's Bench representing myself while Mr. Murray N. Trachtenberg attended on behalf of the Plaintiffs (Manitoba Metis Federation). Since this site is attracting more and more visitors from around the world, we'll take a moment to explain. The MMF is alleging two of us formerly associated with Winnipeg based www.CyberSmokeSignals.com and it's current domain name owner defamed the organization in an online petition posted in late January 2004. The Federation is publicly funded (approximately $20 million annually - Government of Canada 95% the Province the remainder).

Like many of you, prior to this litigation I had never set foot in a courtroom while my knowledge of the law was limited to watching old black and white Perry Mason episodes growing up as a boy in London, Ontario. Later I graduated to Judge Joe Brown (He's my favourite - great sense of humour!) and Judge Judy. One experience I can share with you is the deep and profound respect I have acquired for the knowledge, professionalism and fairness of Manitoba's judiciary. To date an astounding ninety-two (92) documents have been filed in this case the vast preponderance by Counselor Trachtenberg. By the time we're trial ready there could well be over two hundred (200)!

Until recently I didn't know a Master is an experienced lawyer who rules on pre-trial Motions. To date we've been before Senior Master Lee (twice), as well as, Masters Cooper and Sharp. The way it's going I'll probably have encountered everyone at the Provincial Law Courts Building. Rest assured if you should find yourself facing them you will be treated with the utmost respect, dignity, professionalism and above all fairness. This morning it was The Honourable Justice McCawley. Also, a special thank you to the Court Clerk who upon learning I'd be self-representing qrickly briefed me on proper protocol before Justice McCawley entered, however, I do not know her name. Fortuately, I was granted an adjournment about which I'll have more to say very shortly.

There's another trial scheduled to begin soon (April 24, 2006 - unless there's an postponement) we'll be tracking very closely on this site - that of former Manitoba Lieutenant Governor The Honourable Yvon Dumont. For better or worse, depending upon your perspective, cameras and video equipment are not allowed in Canadian courtrooms otherwise we'd find a way to webcam every proceeding.

So where does this leave us? I'll be your court reporter for both cases. Although not as knowledgeable and certainly not as attractive as CNN's Nancy Grace I'll do my best. Trust us Ms Grace you have nothing to worry about from your fans in Canada - please don't sue us!

Sincerely,
Clare L. Pieuk

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