Archive for the ‘injunctions’ Category

Sex, Laws and Videotape: Canadian Government Moves Ahead to Criminalize Revenge Porn

October 24, 2013

Sex, Lies and Videotape (Poster image via Wikipedia)

I previously blogged about the Criminalization of Revenge Porn movement south of the border in a post entitled “Revenge Is A Link Best Served Cold“.

From the October 16, 2013 Speech From The Throne:

Our Government believes that the justice system exists to protect law-abiding citizens and our communities. For too long, the voices of victims have been silenced, while the system coddled criminals. Our Government has worked to re-establish Canada as a country where those who break the law are punished for their actions; where penalties match the severity of crimes committed; where the rights of victims come before the rights of criminals.

  • Our Government will introduce a Victims Bill of Rights to restore victims to their rightful place at the heart of our justice system.
  • Our Government will focus on protecting the most vulnerable of all victims, our children. Recent tragic deaths, including those of Amanda Todd, Rehtaeh Parsons, and Todd Loik, have shocked Canadians.Our Government will introduce legislation giving police and prosecutors new tools to effectively address cyberbullying that involves criminal invasion of privacy, intimidation and personal abuse. This legislation would create a new criminal offence prohibiting the non-consensual distribution of intimate images.

The proposed amendments to the Criminal Code of Canada are based on the euphemistically titled report ” “Cyberbullying and the Non-consensual Distribution of Intimate Images (June 2013)” [pdf], [the “Report”]. The Report was written under the auspices of the Coordinating Committee of Senior Officials (CCSO), Criminal Justice, Cybercrime Working Group (CWG) and a Sub-Group on Cyberbullying established in January 2013 (co-chaired by the Department of Justice Canada and the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General) at the behest of the Federal/Provincial/Territorial Ministers Responsible for Justice and Public Safety.

With respect to the “Non-Consensual Distribution of Intimate Images” (shorter version “Revenge Porn”), the Executive Summary states:

On the issue of the non-consensual distribution of intimate images, the Working Group and CCSO reviewed related literature and existing Criminal Code offences and concluded that there is a gap in the Criminal Code’s treatment of this conduct. The Working Group recommends that a new criminal offence addressing the non-consensual distribution of intimate images be created, including complementary amendments relating to, for example, the forfeiture of items used in the commission of the offence and restitution to permit the victim to be compensated for any costs associated with having the images removed from the Internet.

Read the Report and see whether criminalizing revenge porn addresses any free speech issues. Just kidding, section 2(b) of the Charter which includes the right to freedom of expression (a denuded version of the U.S. First Amendment right of free speech) is not on the Committee’s radar. When consenting adults have sex and choose to film their amorous escapades, it is the responsibility of the Canadian federal government to ensure that the revenge pornographer is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the Law. (more…)

The Gloaming of International Human Rights in Canada?

November 1, 2012

I prevously blogged about  Bill C-10 (short title: Safe Streets and Communities Act), an omnibus criminal law statute, which received Royal Assent on March 13, 2012 —which includes the “Justice for Victims of Terrorism Act and to amend the State Immunity Act” [“JVTA”] —creating a specific cause of action for victims of terrorism, enabling them to sue for loss or damage as a result of actions punishable under the Criminal Code. This part also amends the State Immunity Act (“SIA”) lifting state immunity of foreign states that sponsor terrorism or terrorist activity, but does nothing to improve the prospects for access to justice to Canadian victims of torture and war crimes.

Recently, the Quebec Court of Appeal in Islamic Republic of Iran c. Hashemi, 2012 QCCA 1449 (CanLII) upheld state immunity for torture of Canadian citizens abroad. See my previous post here.

Today, the Supreme Court of Canada denied an application for leave to appeal in Association canadienne contre l’impunité v. Anvil Mining Limited (Québec C.A., January 24, 2012) (34733). The Canadian Centre for International Justice (CCIJ) issued a press release describing the Court’s decision denying leave as the “end of any judicial relief in Canada for victims of the Kilwa massacre”. The CCIJ adds: (more…)

Donald K. Anton, “Public International Law and International Civil Litigation: From Ecuador to the United States and Back (Twice) – Chevron v. Donzige”

November 29, 2011

Donald K. Anton (Australian National University (ANU) – College of Law) has posted “Public International Law and International Civil Litigation: From Ecuador to the United States and Back (Twice) – Chevron v. Donzige”, Precedent, forthcoming. Here is the abstract:

This brief note examines the public international law issues arising in the widely publicized case of Chevron v. Donziger. In 1993, Amazonian indigenous communities and remote farmers sued Texaco in the United States, its home jurisdiction, seeking redress for damages caused by Texaco’s operations. From 1993 to 2002 Texaco, and later Chevron when it acquired Texaco, fought to have the case dismissed and moved to Ecuador as the more appropriate forum to try the case. Ultimately, the US action was dismissed on forum non conveniens grounds. However, the dismissal was conditioned on promises by Chevron to accept jurisdiction in Ecuador and satisfy any judgment rendered by an Ecuadorian court. While the action in the US was ongoing, Chevron apparently removed its assets from Ecuador, ensuring that the Ecuadorian plaintiffs would be unable to enforce and collect any judgment in that country. The case was re-filed and tried in Ecuador and was hotly contested for approximately eight years. On 14 February 2011, the Provincial Court of Sucumbios awarded the Ecuadorian plaintiffs $8.6 billion in damages, with $5.6 billion going toward environmental remediation. Anticipating the worst, Chevron took pre-emptive action back in the US, and filed a complaint against the Ecuadorians and their lawyers alleging fraud and conspiracy and seeking injunction enjoining the enforcement of the judgment. On 7 March 2011, the US Federal District Court in the Southern District of New York granted the preliminary injunction, which purported to enjoin the Ecuadorians from seeking to have the Ecuadorian judgment recognised or enforced anywhere in the world outside of Ecuador.

A copy of the article may be downloaded at SSRN here.

David Rolph, “Corporations’ Right to Sue for Defamation: An Australian Perspective”

October 6, 2011

David Rolph (University of Sydney – Faculty of Law) has posted “Corporations’ Right to Sue for Defamation: An Australian Perspective”, Entertainment Law Review, Vol. 22, pp. 195-200, 2011/Sydney Law School Research Paper No. 11/51. Here is the abstract:

As the United Kingdom undergoes defamation law reform, it might be useful to consider recent Australian developments. Across Australia, since 2006, corporations have had the right to sue for defamation severely curtailed. After five years of operation, it is possible to make an assessment of the advantages and disadvantages of this reform. This article analyses recent cases in which corporations have been forced to rely on alternative causes of action, which previously would have been dealt with as defamation claims. It argues that the reform is sound as a matter of principle and policy but that the particular form of the legislative provision requires refinement. In addition, this article points out that there have been unintended and undesirable consequences to this reform.

Download a copy of the paper via SSRN here.

Permanent Injunction Granted in Landmark Ontario Libel Judgment

August 5, 2011

“The defendant, J. Robert Verdun (“Mr. Verdun”) has engaged in a deliberate, concerted and relentless campaign over a number of years to injure the reputation of the plaintiff, Robert M. Astley (“Mr. Astley”).  And he has done so with malice.  That was the clear and unequivocal verdict of the jury.”

The Honourable Madam Justice Chapnik, Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Astley v. Verdun.

Back on May 30th, 2011, Michael McKiernan of Law Times reported on a “Landmark ruling in libel suit”  :

A jury has awarded $650,000 to a director of the Bank of Montreal after finding renowned shareholder rights activist Robert Verdun had defamed him.

The award to Robert Astley, who is also chairman of the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, included $400,000 for aggravated damages. That makes it one of the largest aggravated damages awards in Canadian history, lawyers believe.

The civil jury rejected Verdun’s defences to eight statements on May 20, finding all of them were defamatory and that he had acted with malice.

The verdict brings an end to a five-year legal battle between the two men over Verdun’s opposition to Astley’s appointment to the Bank of Montreal board.

On June 14th, 2011, in Astley v. Verdun, 2011 ONSC 3651 (CanLII), Madam Justice Chapnik granted the plaintiff, Astley a permanent injunction restraining the defendant, Verdun from disseminating, post on the Internet or publishing, in any manner whatsoever, directly or indirectly, any statements or comments about the plaintiff. (more…)

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