Federal Court hears multiple actions on constitutionality of amended firearms regulations

Bouchelev Law, JSS Barristers, Loberg Law, Edelson Friedman Black involved in firearms challenges

Federal Court hears multiple actions on constitutionality of amended firearms regulations

In this week’s roundup, the Federal Court heard multiple actions filed by private citizens and firearms-rights groups challenging the constitutionality of recent amendments to federal firearm regulations. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court of Canada heard an action involving refugee agreement between Canada and the US, as well as a criminal case originating from British Columbia.

Constitutional challenges

Multiple actions were filed against the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and the Federal Government, assailing the constitutionality of amendments to gun laws which criminalized the use of certain types of firearms and related devices. In effect, the regulations prohibited 11 classes of firearms, resulting in more than 100,000 legally-owned firearms being allegedly banned. Several private citizens who are licensed gun holders are among those who challenged the constitutionality of the amended gun regulations. They were represented by Bouchelev Law in the Federal Court.

The Canadian Coalition for Firearm Rights (CCFR) and several other concerned groups also filed a separate lawsuit, alleging that the amended gun regulations were made by an Order in Council through the Executive branch, not the Legislative branch. As a result, the group asserted that the regulations were not subject to the process that proposed legislation would usually receive. They said that the amendments were created and promulgated in a manner which was “incorrect, unreasonable, and impermissible sub-delegation of authority.” The groups were represented by Jensen Shawa Solomon Duguid Hawkes LLP (JSS Barristers) and Loberg Law.

Licensed firearms owner Cassandra Parker also joined in the filing of lawsuits against the RCMP and the Federal Government. Parker owns a small firearm business, K.K.S Tactical Supplies Ltd., in Prince George, BC. She claimed that the regulations infringed on her constitutional right to enjoyment of property, and that roughly $50,000 in inventory of K.K.S Tactical had been deemed prohibited and virtually worthless as a result of the amended gun regulations. Edelson Friedman Black LLP represented Parker and K.K.S Tactical Supplies.

Proposed class actions

Two separate proposed class proceedings, claiming damages for alleged systemic racism, were filed against the RCMP. Indigenous RCMP members and reservists claimed that they were subjected to racism and race-based harassment and discrimination in the workplace, and were treated differently than non-Indigenous RCMP members and reservists. Cooper Regel LLP and Murphy Battista LLP acted for the class representative plaintiff, Harvey Adam Pierrot. Klein Lawyes LLP acted for Margorie Hudson, who was the represented plaintiff in the other class action.

The Federal Court also heard a proposed class action against Dye & Durham Limited, Omers Infrastructure Management Inc., and DoProcess LP. The class argued that the defendant companies conspired to control the price for the supply of the software platform, “Conveyancer,” that facilitates the closing of real estate transactions. The class sought damages or compensation in the amount of $200 million. Cartel and Bui LLP and the Law Office of Calvin Goldman Q.C. acted for the representative plaintiffs of the proposed class.

Alleged genocide

Uyghur Rights Advocacy Project (URAP) sued the Federal Government for its alleged failure to prevent the ongoing genocide against members of the Uyghur population in the northwest region of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). URAP claimed that each of the 2,000 members of the Uyghur population in Canada had either personally or directly suffered from the alleged genocide.  URAP also argued that, as a contracting state to the Genocide Convention, Canada is required to prevent and punish the crime of genocide. URAP was represented by Larochelle Avocats in the Federal Court.

Workplace grievance

Mark Stentaford, a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, grieved the denial of his claim for medical fees that he paid to a fertility clinic. Stentaford contended that the RCMP Commissioner committed an error in law and came to an unreasonable conclusion by ruling that, “the failure to provide payment for in vitro fertilization treatment to male RCMP members did not constitute impermissible discrimination under the Canadian Human Rights Act.” The matter was brought to the Federal Court, where Stentaford was represented by Nelligan O'Brien Payne LLP.

Intellectual property

In lawsuits involving intellectual property rights, some notable law firms present in court this week include Gowling WLG for Boehringer Ingelheim (Canada) Ltd., Bereskin and Parr LLP for Groupe Zoom Media Inc., Belmore Neidrauer LLP for Janssen Inc., and Goodmans LLP for Apotex Inc.

Supreme Court of Canada

Canada’s highest court heard an action involving immigration and refugee law and a criminal case originating from British Columbia this week.

In Canadian Council for Refugees, et al. v. Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, et al., several refugee claimants were deemed ineligible to enter Canada pursuant to the Safe Third Country Agreement between Canada and the US. These claimants collectively challenged the Canadian government’s failure to review the designation of the US as a safe country under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations. Refugee Law Office, Jared Will & Associates, and Prasanna Balasundaram appeared in court as representatives of the refugee claimants and public interest groups.

The case of His Majesty the King v. Matthew James Johnston, et al. involved the issue of abuse of process due to alleged police misconduct during investigation and pre-trial custody. Martland & Saulnier acted for Matthew James Johnston, and Buck & Dlab Law represented Cody Rae Haevischer.

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