Law Times

May 10, 2010

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Follow on $3.55 • Vol. 21, No. 16 Untitled-3 1 5/5/10 3:55:30 PM Inside This Issue 5 Plaintiff Rights 7 Dangerous Conflicts 9 Focus On Securities Law Quote of the week "Canada has certainly been criticized in the past for failing to address insider trading. The substantial jail sentence and the speedy resolution of this case will send a strong message that Canada is serious about securities violations." — Emily Cole, Miller Thomson LLP, See Guilty, page 11 Covering Ontario's Legal Scene ntitled-3 1 Billions of dollars invested, not a penny lost. May 10, 2010 5/4/10 2:49:21 PM Lawyer sued by Aga Khan fights back Statement of defence claims someone else behind lawsuit BY MICHAEL McKIERNAN Law Times A Toronto lawyer facing a lawsuit by the Aga Khan is alleging the spiritual leader isn't actually behind the ac- tion, according to his statement of defence. In the document fi led with the Federal Court, Alnaz Jiwa claims Shafi k Sachedina, a senior Ismaili who works at the Aga Khan's offi ces in Aiglemont, France, initiated the action for breach of copyright. Ismailis are part of a branch of Islam that accepts the hereditary imam, who traces his lineage all the way back to a cousin of the Prophet Muhammad, as its spiritual leader. If the action "is authorized by the Aga Khan, it was authorized based on misleading information given to the Aga Khan by his advisers," Jiwa said in the statement of defence. Brian Gray, a senior partner at Ogilvy Renault LLP and counsel for the Aga Khan, declined to com- ment on the merits of the defence but did confi rm his client autho- rized the action. Nevertheless, he says he has also dealt with Sachedi- na on the matter. "We are thinking about how we can convince the defendants that it really is the Aga Khan that's bringing this action," Gray tells Law Times. compiling and selling a book containing Farmans, a type of re- ligious message delivered by the spiritual leader to his followers. None of the allegations have been proven in court. Jiwa's co-accused, Nagib Taj- din, who gives his mailing ad- dress as being in Nairobi, refers throughout his statement of de- fence to the "usurper plaintiff " and claims he presented the Aga Khan with the fi rst volume of his collection at a ceremony in Mon- treal in 1992. "After giving his blessings, the imam gave the guidance to con- tinue the work [the publication of his Farmans] with blessing for the success in the work undertaken," Tajdin claims. Both defendants are so far representing themselves in the case. In an e-mail to Law Times, The Aga Khan, pictured in Ottawa in 2008. The hereditary imam has launched a copyright case against two men, including a Toronto lawyer, over religious books they published. A statement of claim fi led last month list- ed the Aga Khan as the plaintiff and accused Jiwa and a Montreal businessman of infring- ing the imam's copyright and moral rights by Jiwa said the Ismaili constitution doesn't prohibit the reproduc- tion of Farmans. He added the Aga Khan would have explicitly banned the practice in one of his teachings if he objected. "Our imam urges us to com- ply with our constitution, and as such I cannot imagine that my imam would bring such an action when my activities are not breaching any See Lawyer, page 4 critics who say long wait times and poor access make for inadequate service. But in the wake of recent cuts at the agency, many clinic lawyers re- main convinced the increased em- phasis on web and phone services will prove detrimental to tradition- al forms of direct representation of- fered by LAO. As part of its plan to phase out legal aid application offi ces, LAO is moving more of its services into courthouses and has enhanced phone services. "Some of the wait times people have experienced have LAO vows to fix 'unacceptable' hotline waits L BY MICHAEL McKIERNAN Law Times egal Aid Ontario is defend- ing its new toll-free hotline after a sharp rebuke from been unacceptable in our view, but we are adding new people, new re- sources to the client service centre to get our wait times down to an acceptable level," said David McK- illop, LAO's vice president of policy and research at a town hall meeting for lawyers in Toronto last week. McKillop explained that de- mand for the service was higher than expected. But a recent LAO news release indicating that 13,000 people had used its toll-free number in February and waited an average of about two minutes to have their call dealt with sparked a skeptical reaction from lawyers who help cli- ents in the legal aid system. In fact, Etienne Saint-Aubin, ex- ecutive director of the S D & G Le- gal Clinic in Cornwall, Ont., says his staff tested the service themselves. "We don't take the press release's word for it because the reality is diff erent. Access is not good, and waiting times are long." Th e clinic serves eastern Ontario francophones, who have a particu- lar diffi culty with the phone line. Th ey wait as long as an hour just to speak with an LAO representative in French, says Saint-Aubin. About 3,000 of the calls to the hotline were from people requir- ing certifi cate services, a number that has ballooned from about 200 in November. LAO says use of its simplifi ed online application por- tal, which accelerates the applica- tions of clearly eligible applicants, has doubled in the last six months. Kristian Justesen, a spokesman for the agency, says 40 per cent of all certifi cate applications now happen over the phone. "People have been asking for this for years, and I think it's particularly impor- tant when you think that a return bus fare in Toronto costs $6. When you get outside Toronto, it's a big deal to get to an offi ce to make an application. Now you can do it all from a pay phone." But Marshall Swadron, chair- man of the mental health legal committee, says phone and Inter- net services bypass a large section of the population traditionally served by legal aid. His clients, many of whom don't own a private phone, have little use for the hotline. "Th ey don't have some place where they can stand for two hours waiting to get through and talk- ing about their case," he says. "You See Review, page 4 THERE IS A DIFFERENCE RainMaker Group 110 Yonge Street, Suite 1101 Toronto, Ontario M5C 1T4 Untitled-5 1 Tel: 416-863-9543 Fax: 416-863-9757 3/23/10 11:35:15 AM Click here to subscribe today to LAW TIMES Photo credit: Chris Wattie/Reuters

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