Canada's Federal Court ruled on Tuesday that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's use of the Emergencies Act in 2022 to punish protesting truckers was both unreasonable and unconstitutional.
"I have concluded that the decision to issue the Proclamation does not bear the hallmarks of reasonableness — justification, transparency and intelligibility — and was not justified in relation to the relevant factual and legal constraints that were required to be taken into consideration," wrote Justice Richard G. Mosley in his ruling.
The decision follows an application for judicial review requested by the Canadian Constitution Foundation, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, and various other applicants who cried foul over the use of emergency measures to quell Freedom Convoy protests in Ottawa, which allowed the government to freeze the bank accounts of protesters, conscript tow truck drivers, and arrest people for participating in assemblies deemed illegal by Trudeau's government.
EMERGENCIES ACT INVOCATION DECLARED UNREASONABLE BY FEDERAL COURT!!!! pic.twitter.com/IGD6W44es2— Christine Van Geyn (@cvangeyn) January 23, 2024
According to Mosley, Trudeau's regulations had violated Charter rights - particularly against freedom of thought, opinion and expression. The Emergencies Act order was also found to infringe on the right to security against unreasonable search and seizure.
"It is declared that the decision to issue the Proclamation and the association Regulations and Order was unreasonable and ultra vires the Emergencies Act," reads the ruling.
"It is declared that the decision that the Regulations infringed section 2 (b) of the Charter and declared that the Order infringed section 8 of the Charter and that neither infringement was justified under section 1."
The Canadian Constitution Foundation had initiated the judicial review, expressing concerns over what they deemed as a severe example of government overreach and violations of civil liberties during the pandemic.
“The Trudeau government’s use of this extraordinary law may be the most severe example of overreach and violations of civil liberties that was seen during the pandemic,” said Van Geyn at the time.
“The use of this powerful law was unauthorized because the legal threshold to use the law was not met. The Emergencies Act contains a last resort clause: it can only be used when there is a national emergency and there are no other laws at the federal, provincial and/or municipal levels which can address the situation. Parliament cannot use the Emergencies Act as a tool of convenience, as it did in this case.” -TNC.news
The government plans to appeal the ruling.
UPDATE - Deputy PM says Trudeau's government will appeal the federal court’s ruling because they believe invoking the Emergencies Act was "right" and "necessary" at the time.pic.twitter.com/V2MGQWTMF4— Disclose.tv (@disclosetv) January 23, 2024
Things are going great for Trudeau, eh?
Read the entire ruling below: