What’s Hot on CanLII This Week

Here are the three most-consulted English-language cases on CanLII for the week of July 16 – 23.

1a. Miguna v. Toronto Police Services Board 2008 ONCA 799 [This opinion refers to an earlier opinion in the matter; as a result, there are two related cases essentially tied for first place.]

[1] For the second time in three years Miguna Miguna’s statement of claim has come to this Court entirely – or, in this case, almost entirely – struck down. In the action he claims damages against the prosecution and police defendants for conduct arising out of his arrest, trial and acquittal on three charges of sexual assault. Although the action was commenced in July, 2004, no statements of defence have yet been delivered. I have concluded that it is time they were.

1b. Miguna v. Ontario (Attorney General) 2005 CanLII 46385

2. Lundy v. VIA Rail Canada Inc. 2012 ONSC 4152

[2] In the case at bar, which is a proposed class action, without obtaining court permission, Via Rail Canada Inc. (“Via Rail”) and Canadian National Railway Company (“CNR”), the defendants in the proposed class action, communicated with several putative class members, who had been passengers on a train that derailed on route to Toronto. Via Rail and CNR made a settlement offer to the putative class members. Although Via Rail and CNR did not know it, some of the putative class members already had a lawyer and client relationships with proposed class counsel.

3. R. v. Triffon 2012 ONCJ 437 [Note the unusual paragraph 62.]

[2] Mr. Triffon is charged with attempting to “obstruct or pervert or defeat the course of justice in a judicial proceeding by threatening to use his vote, position and influence as a jury member to cause a ‘hung jury’ irrespective of the evidence at trial.”

The most-consulted French-language decision was Senécal c. Cégep du Vieux Montréal 2012 QCCS 1995.

1) Le Cégep avait-il le droit de résilier le mandat de Mme Senécal comme il l’a fait?

2) Mme Senécal a-t-elle le droit de recevoir compensation à la suite de la résiliation de son mandat par le Cégep défendeur et, si oui, pour quel montant?


  1. As Canadian Lawyer Magazine reports, Miguna Miguna, the plaintiff top cases 1a and 1b, previously practised human rights law in Ontario as a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada. The cases relate to proceedings against the Toronto police, among others, for malicious prosecution in connection with some criminal charges in respect of which he received acquittals. The decisions gained prominence over the past week for reasons completely unrelated to the standard fare of Canadian legal research and public policy.

    From Canadian Lawyer Magazine and Kenyan press reports we learn that Mr. Miguna recently released a book “Peeling back the mask: a quest for justice in Kenya” detailing his time working in the office of the Kenyan Prime Minister. Clearly a person of political prominence in Kenya (among other notable attendees, the Canadian High Commissioner spoke at the book launch), Mr. Miguna appears to have many supporters and detractors active in both traditional and social media. As one ally noted:

    Facebook is still sizzling and Twitter is twitching with tweets about Miguna. The coverage, has on the whole been very positive even though there are battalions of Miguna detractors in many corners of cyberspace.

    In the normal course of events, and despite the benefit of world-wide free access to Canadian law facilitated through CanLII, one might not expect Kenyan citizens to take a strong interest in 4 and 8 year old decisions of the Ontario Court of Appeal. But of course there is no reason that Kenyan political debates would be any different than Canadian political debates when it comes to linking legal information to a social media post.

    Interestingly, Mr. Miguna was in Canada last week while all this was going on as part of a planned vacation and, his is interview with Canadian Lawyer Magazine makes clear, to promote his book.

  2. Ooops. A little too fast on the “submit” button and I failed to flag that the following text was a quote from the prior link:

    “Facebook is still sizzling and Twitter is twitching with tweets about Miguna. The coverage, has on the whole been very positive even though there are battalions of Miguna detractors in many corners of cyberspace.”