36333 Her Majesty the Queen v. Chad Walsh

Criminal law – Appeals – Deference

On appeal from the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador – Court of Appeal. The applicant was convicted of sexual assault.  The Court of Appeal held that the trial judge erred by refusing to consider the application of the defence of mistake of fact in the circumstances of this case.  The appeal was allowed.  The conviction was set aside and a new trial was ordered.

36314 Christopher Michael Staetter v. Her Majesty the Queen

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms – Freedom of conscience and religion

On appeal from the Court of Appeal for British Columbia. Mr. Staetter was charged with two counts of uttering threats and two counts of criminal harassment.  The Crown’s evidence included numerous threatening text messages from Mr. Staetter to the complainant and numerous phone messages left for the complainant and her father.  A psychiatrist testified that Mr. Staetter likely suffered a schizoaffective disorder. The Applicant was declared not criminally responsible and committed to a psychiatric hospital. The Applicant’s application for leave to appeal the custodial order was dismissed.

36295 François Deraspe v. Canadian Electrolytic Zinc Ltd., et al.

Civil procedure — Class actions — Case management

On appeal from the Quebec Court of Appeal. The applicant Mr. Deraspe instituted a class action against the respondent Canadian Electrolytic Zinc Ltd. (CEZL), which operated a zinc refinery in Quebec.  He blamed it for the release of sulphur trioxide into the air in April 2004.  Fearing that CEZL alone could not guarantee execution of any judgment obtained, Mr. Deraspe tried to join the parent companies (Xstrata and Glencore) to his action, alleging that they and their predecessors had operated the refinery through CEZL and used its juridical personality to dissemble fraud or contravention of a rule of public order.  The trial judge found that CEZL had had sole [translation] “custody” of the refinery in August 2004 and had been its sole operator.  Moreover, Xstrata and Glencore could not be held liable for CEZL’s obligations solely because CEZL was one of their subsidiaries.  The Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal and condemned the [translation] “improper and outrageous” language used in the pleadings filed by counsel for Mr. Deraspe.

36272 Health Professions Review Board v. Alan Moore and College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia

Administrative law — Boards and tribunals — Health Professions Review Board

On appeal from the Court of Appeal for British Columbia. A complaint was made by a patient to the respondent, the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia against the respondent physician, Alan Moore.  The College advised the patient that after reviewing the complaint the College had no specific criticism of Dr. Moore. The patient requested a review of the College’s decision by the Health Professions Review Board.  The Review Board concluded the College’s decision was inadequate and the decision was sent back to the College for reconsideration. On judicial review, the Supreme Court of British Columbia set aside the Review Board’s decision and reinstated the decision of the Registrar.  The Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal.