36709    X.M.V. v. F.V.


(Publication Ban in Case) (Publication Ban on Party)

Family law – Marriage – Nullity

X.M.V. sought revocation of a default judgment annulling the marriage entered into by the parties in Albania. The courts below refused to revoke the annulment of marriage, as the outcome of the case turned mainly on the credibility of the parties and the contradictory testimony. The Quebec Superior Court dismissed the Motion in revocation of default judgement. The Quebec Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal.

36725    Louis Cartier v. Her Majesty the Queen


Criminal law — Trial — Joinder of counts and severance

Mr. Cartier was convicted by a jury of two counts of first degree murder. The first murder victim was Serge Hervieux, who was killed by shots from a firearm on August 26, 1999 at a Montréal business. The second murder victim was François Gagnon, who was shot in his residence in Montréal on June 6, 2000. According to the prosecution theory, the two murders had been committed by the Hells Angels to settle scores against their rivals as part of the biker war.

At the start of the trial, Mr. Cartier brought a motion to sever the two counts. His motion was dismissed. He then tried unsuccessfully to have some DNA evidence excluded. His motion for a  stay of proceedings on the first count, which was based on the disappearance or destruction of evidence, was then dismissed. Lastly, a motion by the Crown for the admission of similar fact evidence was also dismissed. On appeal, Mr. Cartier relied on several grounds of appeal related to the following: (1) the application to sever the counts and the similar fact evidence; (2) the application for a stay of proceedings; (3) the testimony of the biker gang expert; (4) the DNA evidence; (5) the unreasonable verdict and the application for a directed verdict of acquittal; and (6) various allegations concerning the instructions. His appeal was dismissed. The Quebec Superior Court convicted the Applicant of two counts of first degree murder. The Quebec Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal.

36617   Fred Bellehumeur v. Windsor Factory Supply Ltd.


Employment law — Unjust dismissal — Duty to accommodate

The applicant employee was terminated for cause as a result of violent threats he made to fellow employees when he left the place of employment after being disciplined. Shortly after termination, the employee’s lawyer sent a letter to the respondent, employer indicating that the employee suffered from a mental disability. The employee requested the termination be lifted but the employer maintained the termination.

The employee brought an action for wrongful dismissal, a violation of the Human Rights Code, R.S.O. 1990, c. H.19 and claims related to his dismissal from employment. The trial judge dismissed the action. The Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal. 

36611   City of Saint John v. Canadian Union of Public Employees, Local 18, M.B.


(Publication ban on party)

Administrative law – Judicial review – Res judicata

M.B., who has obsessive compulsive disorder, was suspended with pay by the applicant due to an incident in the workplace. He was terminated after an internal investigation. He filed a complaint with the Human Rights Commission of New Brunswick (the “Commission”) alleging that he had been suspended and then terminated as a result of discrimination based on mental disability. The Commission dismissed his complaint and that decision was not appealed. Although M.B.’s initial application for employment insurance benefits was approved, the applicant successfully appealed that decision. An Employment Insurance Board of Referees unanimously denied his claim on the basis that he was dismissed for his ‘misconduct’ pursuant to the meaning of the legislation, and therefore not eligible. M.B. did not appeal that decision.

The respondent union submitted a grievance to the applicant claiming it had violated articles 4.01 and 22.05 of the collective agreement and that M.B. had been unjustly dismissed. The applicant filed a preliminary motion raising issues of estoppel, res judicata, collateral attack and abuse of process. A majority of the Arbitration Board dismissed the grievance on the basis that its subject matter had already been determined by the Commission and the Board of Referees. The Court of Queen’s Bench of New Brunswick quashed the decision in part, finding that while the human rights issue was estopped, the determination that the Board of Referees had disposed of the issues raised by art. 22.05 was unreasonable. The Court remitted all other issues raised in the grievance to a newly constituted board for a determination on the merits. The Court of Appeal of New Brunswick dismissed the appeal.

36578   Mirsada Mujagic, Belmir Mujagic v. Annette Kamps


Evidence – Expert evidence

The applicant, Ms. Mujagic, was involved in a motor vehicle accident in 2001. She commenced an action against the respondent, seeking damages for personal injuries. At the jury trial, Mrs. Mujagic, who represented herself and her son, attempted to file medical consultation notes that contained opinions from medical doctors who were not being called as witnesses. The trial judge ruled that the notes could not be made exhibits because Ms. Mujagic had failed to comply with the notice requirements in Rule 53.03 Rules of Civil Procedure, R.R.O. 1990, Reg. 194. The trial judge also ruled that the doctors could testify for the applicants but due to non-compliance with Rule 53.03, they were not permitted to give an opinions on whether there was a causal link between their diagnoses and the motor vehicle accident. The jury found that Ms. Kamps was 30 per cent and Ms. Mujagic 70 per cent at fault for the accident. They assessed the damages for the applicants at zero and the action was dismissed. On appeal, Ms. Mujagic maintained that the trial had been unfair for her, as an unrepresented litigant, particularly in the manner in which the trial judge had treated her expert evidence.