The Canadian courts are facing an important issue involving a free press — and they seem to be failing the test. The Quebec Court of Appeal this week refused to remove a gag on Daniel Leblanc, a Globe and Mail reporter ,who was barred from disclosing facts about negotiations in a civil lawsuit. It is a prior restraint by Justice Jean-François de Grandpré that would be viewed as an outrage in the United States.
The government is suing Groupe Polygone to regain $35-million that it received for placing ads and other promotional material for the federal government. The government charges the firm with over billing.
Mr. Leblanc reported on secret settlement negotiations and ticked off Justice Jean-François de Grandpré. Grandpré imposed the ban despite the fact that the government never requested such an action and denied the newspaper a chance to contest it. Yet, the appellate court saw no reason to lift such a direct attack on a free press.
For the full story, click here.
10 thoughts on “Grandpré Malfunction: Canadian Courts Refuse to Lift Prior Restraint on Journalist Covering Court Case”
If you think I’m the kind of guy to let Bush Co. slide, you haven’t read any of my posts. That’s what Washington doesn’t get – this ISN’T going away and a large percentage of the populace ISN’T going to let it be swept under the rug. All of the Neocons, from propagandist Bill Kristol, to the puppets Addington and Yoo, to the signatories of PNAC, to the Bush and Cheney themselves and their “business partners”. They WILL be paying for their treasons. I prefer prison orange, but since they seem intent on pushing the issue, the time to take Jefferson’s advice will come about at their own hands. You want post-partisanship? Hey, we all do. But the ONLY way that happens is if the GOP give up the criminals in their midst, the Democrats also get out of bed with K Street (a street that should be burned to ground to protect the Constitution, preferably with the lobbyists inside the buildings – shut those graft merchants down), and start punishing corporations for abuses by jailing criminal C.E.O.’s AND seizing their assets to offset the damage they have WILLFULLY done to this country in the name of their greed. And I don’t mean 6 mos. at a federal country club prison. 20 years in Leavenworth or a Supermax. Thain and his ilk should die poor men – disavowed by society and limited to working for the minimum wage that they and their lobbyists worked so hard to keep below a living wage. That’d be justice. These are no longer negotiable points. You broke it, you own the consequences. If not, we all know where “Let them eat cake” leads.
I live in Ohio. I worked on the recount effort. I am certain GWB never won an election as president of the US. We did not get the govt. we deserved, or even the one we voted for. I pledge to keep fighting for our current govt. to follow the rule of law and to hold accountable the previous administration for their crimes.
I can’t argue too much with what you said, I was mainly defending JT. You need to remember that a lot of the more heinous details didn’t come out until after the ’04 elections. We’re trying hard here to restore the rule of law, but when those breaking the law are powerful, progress is slow.
I was not directing the remark at JT personally but rather at the US generally because of this:
“It is a prior restraint by Justice Jean-François de Grandpré that would be viewed as an outrage in the United States.”
So the US is outraged, after the recent track record there,”why would the outrage of anybody who seems to excuse such criminality be pertinent in this case?”
This leads nicely to your additional remark
I will not confuse government with persons they govern.
But as for “the people” it governs that is a whole other matter. When “the people” return a lying criminal to do its bidding then who is responsible? Obviously the people where happy enough with the previous term’s performance to invite the same government to continue with an increased majority. So here I think I can hold “the people” responsible for the actions of its government.
If “the people” want to return to the rule of law then they need to stop acting in opposition to that aim.
I would hope that you don’t confuse a government with the people it governs.
So universally true! Thank you.
Actually JT spoke out at every chance against those things you mentioned, as did most of the regulars here. I would hope that you don’t confuse a government with the people it governs.
Bit of a rich comment Prof
Your last government stamped stuff top secret to prevent release, invented stuff to go to war, spied on its own folk, suspended habeus corpus and a myriad other things that don’t seem to be deemed criminal in the US at the moment. So why would the outrage of anybody who seems to excuse such criminality be pertinent in this case?
What Mike said.
Prior restraint is one of those legal issues that even non-attorney’s like myself find interesting. I hate the pre-trial publicity allowed in criminal cases and feel that it is used often by the prosecution to prejudice the case against the defendant. We have always seen the difficulty in finding impartial juries in murder cases, especially when the defendant represents a minority of some sorts. However, banning publicity in criminal cases can also lead to injustice and the possibility of allowing the government to hide its processes.
It’s my guess that in civil cases it would almost never be a good idea to allow prior restraint, because curtailing publicity would tend to be about covering up some details that it would be in the public’s interest to know. I think this is obviously occurring in this particular case. This seems a situation that is embarrassing to both sides and while delicate negotiations may hang in the balance, there would apparently be an urgent right to know by the public. File under over-weaning judicial ego and pride.
Canada needs to be more like the US–we have a well-paid-off press and the govt. and corporations don’t have to worry about these things.
Comments are closed.