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CONSTITUTIONAL PROCEEDINGS - Pleadings

Tuesday, June 25, 2019 @ 6:26 AM  


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Motion by British Columbia to strike parts of the claim. The plaintiffs claimed damages arising from alleged sexual assaults by a corrections officer while they were incarcerated. The pleadings alleged that the wrongs were torts and breaches of the Charter and fiduciary duties. British Columbia argued that the Charter claims should be struck because tort damages were available and that the fiduciary duty claims should be struck because it did not owe fiduciary duties to inmates.

HELD: Motion allowed in part. British Columbia established, as a countervail, alternative remedies that rendered the Charter damages sought unnecessary. The damages sought reflected those that were typically sought in a personal injury action. The pleaded consequences of the sexual assaults were the same as the Charter breaches. The impacts on the plaintiffs did not differ as between the tort and Charter wrongs. The compensatory, vindication and deterrence aspects of the relief sought could be found within tort damages. The question of whether a fiduciary duty existed deserved examination through a trial.

Johnson v. British Columbia (Attorney General), [2019] B.C.J. No. 845, British Columbia Supreme Court, D.M. Masuhara J., May 13, 2019. Digest No. TLD-June242019004