Thursday, July 12, 2012

Canadian Judicial Council releases another "whack" of documents!

Good Day Readers:

The latest "document dump" in in two parts:

(1) Fifty-three (53) Tabs covering the work of the Inquiry from October 12, 2011 - July 3, 2012

(2) A 10-page document dated and signed by Inquiry Committee Members outlining the background and decision to grant complainant Alex Chapman limited intervener standing

Part (1)

After a preliminary quick and dirty cursory look at the 53 Tabs, much appears to be given to "toing and froing"/"tit for tatting" (usually referred to as legal wrangling) as Independent Counsel Guy Pratte and Team Sheila Block - Molly Reynolds jockey/spar for the best position for their respective clients prior to the start of the trial phase of proceedings scheduled to begin next week (Monday, July 16) - you know:
Not much really jumped out to hit us in the face with the possible exception of Tab 4 a letter dated November 16, 2011 from "The Cat" to Inquiry Counsel George Macintosh (copied to Counsel for ACJ Douglas Team Block-Reynolds). In it Mr. Pratte explores his powers as defined in The Judges Act noting for investigative purposes the Inquiry is deemed to be a Superior Court. He then goes on to argue while he does not the Inquiry Committee indeed has subpoena power.

In a related Tab there's legal chatter about duces tecum versus testificandum subpoenas versus summons. Dues tecum is an order to produce documents while testificandum requires a person to provide oral testimony. Summons are served to notify someone they are part of a lawsuit, or in this case and Inquiry. Didn't know that did you ..... well did you?

We're assuming to ignore any of these orders could land a person with a Big, Fat contempt of court citation and you know what that means? A fine and/or jail time.

The fact the Inquiry is deemed a Superior Court following many of the rules and procedures of The Federal Court of Canada strongly suggests at the end of the day should either Party disagree with the final ruling the decision can be appealed in The Federal Court of Canada.

Part (2)

Page 9 sets out the 6-conditions under which Alex Chapman has been granted limited intervener standing:

(i) His lawyer Rocco "Rocky" Galati will be permitted to participate in the questioning of Mr. Chapman and among those witnesses currently subpoenaed Associate Chief Justice Douglas, Mr. Knig and Mr. Histed

You've got to like a lawyer you can call "Rocky" just like in the movies. As he's cross examining witnesses will he be wearing boxing gloves?

(ii) "Rocky" will be permitted to make final submissions

(iii) Alex Chapman's participation through his Counsel will be confined to all aspects of Allegation 1. There are 4

(iv) Funding will be limited t one lawyer for the Inquiry plus reasonable preparation costs

(v) Fees must be in accordance with the rates prescribed by the Federal Department of Justice

(vi) Administrative arrangements will be established by the CJC's Executive Director

Whatever that means?

Wonder how much all this will cost taxpayers when they are quietly slipped the final bill and told to shut up and pay it - how many millions do you figure?

What's supremely ironic in all this is there's no true independent intervener/oversight function. Mr. Chapman cannot be considered to be such because as the complainant he has a vested interest in the outcome. Presumably, the Inquiry didn't want a fox lose in it's well-ordered, tightly controlled little legal chicken coop.

Clare L. Pieuk

Documents have been made public by the Inquiry Committee concerning Associate Chief Justice Lori Douglas

Ottawa, 12 July 2012 –The Inquiry Committee into the matter of Associate Chief Justice Lori Douglas has made public correspondence, submissions and rulings which are now available on the Council’s website at

The Inquiry Committee will resume its public hearings on 16 July 2012 at 10 am at the Federal Court in Winnipeg, 363 Broadway Street, 4th Floor, courtroom #1.

Norman Sabourin
Executive Director and Senior General Counsel
(613) 288-1566 ext 302


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