The CHBA stood alongside lawyers from across Canada in opposing the Canadian Bar Association’s intervention before the Supreme Court of Canada in Chevron Corp.’s high-profile case against a group of Ecuadorean indigenous people.
The case involves a $9.51 billion judgment that indigenous villagers had obtained against Chevron for extensive pollution in the Lago Agrio region of Ecuador. The villagers seek to enforce that judgment against Chevron’s assets in Ontario. A lower court had dismissed the case against Chevron on grounds that there was no jurisdiction in Ontario to enforce the judgment, but the Ontario Court of Appeal reversed that decision. Chevron appealed the matter to the Supreme Court of Canada.
The CHBA raised the procedural concern that the CBA had violated its own policies in deciding to intervene, along with the substantive concern that the CBA’s intervention would constrain access to justice for one of the most vulnerable groups in our global society: indigenous peoples living on resource-rich lands.
On October 16, 2014, just one day before the deadline to submit its factum, the CBA withdrew its intervention. The CHBA’s letter to CBA President, Michele H. Hollins, Q.C.on this issue may be viewed here: http://nebula.wsimg.com/0f55bf77ec4b21e62d079089d37db5fd?AccessKeyId=DA0FDD96E2979F714914&disposition=0&alloworigin=1