Warman & Canadian Human Rights Commission Still Itching to Send Terry Tremaine to Prison
REGINA. March 13, 2012. Speaking to a meeting of free speech stalwarts in Regina tonight Douglas Christie reported on a recent case management conference call regarding former political prisoner Terry Tremaine. Maitre Poulin, lawyer for the Canadian Human Rights Commission, and complainant Richard Warman are pressing for an early sentencing hearing in the hopes of sending the Internet dissident to jail.
On two complaints from chronic complainer Richard Warman, Mr. Tremaine faced a contempt of court hearing in Victoria in November, 2010. On November 29, trial judge Sean Harrington acquitted Mr.Tremaine of contempt of court as he had not been served with the court order until the summer of 2009. The federal court order was to enforce the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal decision of February, 2007 ordering Mr. Tremaine to "cease and desist" from posting on the Internet the same or similar passages that were found by the tribunal as being likely to "expose to hatred or contempt" privileged groups in Canada.
Later in 2007, Mr., Tremaine made some further postings that he felt complied with the vague cease and desist order. These became the subject of the contempt of court charge. By the summer of 2009, Daniel Poulin had expanded his interpretation of "cease and desist "to mean taking down of Mr., Tremaine's website http://nspcanada.nfshost.com , which contains much mainline material. This would involve the complete political gagging on Mr. Tremaine.
On October 26, 2011, in a decision that contained a strong dissenting opinion, a three-person panel of the Federal Court of Appeal overturned Mr. Tremaine's acquittal and entered a guilty verdict. In his dissenting opinion, Judge Denis Pelletier found the CHRT order vague.
On November 23, 2011 Douglas Christie filed leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada.
In the recent conference call from Montreal, Federal Court Judge Harrington. demanded whether Mr. Poulin and Warman seriously wanted a man jailed "for something, the Supreme Court might decide he is not guilty of," Mr. Christie reported.
Judge Harrington suggested waiting until the Supreme Court decides whether or not to grant leave. He twice repeated his question to Mr. Warman and, Mr. Christie reported, "never received a direct answer," just more preaching about the necessity to swiftly punish people for contempt of court.
In the end, Warman and Poulin were given until April 10 to put their submissions in writing. Mr. Christie will have until My 10 to craft an answer.
The Supreme Court usually responds to requests for leave to appeal within six months.
As well, Bill C-304 which would repeal Sec., 13 - the Internet section of the Canadian Human Rights Act under which Mr. Tremaine was found guilty -- has received second reading and may well be law by the summer.
"We will fight this every step of the way," the Battling Barrister vowed at the end of his remarks. -- Paul Fromm