Judge rules he can continue to preside over case

Staff ~ The Telegram
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The chief justice of the trial division of the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador has decided he will continue to preside over two court cases involving the province's child and youth advocate and the Speaker of the House.
Justice David Orsborn told lawyers for Neville and the House of Assembly today that he would hear the case, which Neville's lawyer asked he be removed from.
Bern Coffey argued that Orsborn's past comments about a related case involving Neville indicated that the judge doesn't view the matter as important.
"Is some of this at least spinning our wheels for no purpose?" Orsborn asked in July when there was a delay in one of the cases.
"It amazes me what people can find to fight about," he added.
In his decision today, Orsborn dismissed the application, saying the comments were made in another proceeding with different facts, legal issues and, except for Neville, different parties.
"There is no crossover of issues between the two proceedings. The comments were directed to the management of the other proceeding generally and did not go to the merits of either proceeding," Orsborn said, adding that the comments didn't refer to Neville.
Neville was suspended by cabinet with pay in August after she became embroiled in a series of complaints and counter-complaints, investigations and court actions. She is now going through the courts seeking the right to address the House of Assembly.
A vote in the legislature is the only mechanism that can permanently remove a child and youth advocate and she wants to defend herself if a resolution for her dismissal is tabled.
The House filed an application subsequent to Neville's pitch to speak to the legislature. It objected to the court hearing the merits of Neville's request before deciding if it has the jurisdiction to do so, based on parliamentary privilege.

Organizations: Supreme Court

Geographic location: Newfoundland and Labrador

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Recent comments

  • Howard
    July 02, 2010 - 13:20

    Justice Orsborn should not be the one to determine if it is fitting for him to continue to hear this case. How ridiculous is our legal system getting when its arrogance precludes such decisions being made by an independent and unbiased third party? At least that way the general public would be fooled into thinking there is some transparency and reasonable process. It compares to the RNC investigating criminal matters or charges against its own members. What a joke!

  • Not Surprised
    July 02, 2010 - 13:18

    I am in agreement with Howard, but this does not surpriseme, it seems the members of our justice system can do what they want, they are not accountable to anyone. It is absolutely ridiculous for a judge to make a decision on whether or not he should/could oversee a case without prejiduce. Of course he is not going to say he would be prejiduce, our justice system is a joke, and it is acts like this one that makes it the joke it is.

  • Willow
    July 02, 2010 - 13:14

    This is funny, but it shouldn't be. Why can't this decision be made by some independent body, so much for democracy. Another case for elected and not appointed judges.

  • GAR
    July 02, 2010 - 13:11

    It's nice of Justice Orsborn to discuss the matter with himself and agree with himsel that he should continue to preside over these cases. If he had disagreed with himself he likely would have overruled himself and then decide to agree with himself anyway. No doubt he listened to himself intently but didn't hear any dissenting opinions. So there you have it. Justice has been served. Move on, nothing more to be seen here.

  • Howard
    July 01, 2010 - 20:02

    Justice Orsborn should not be the one to determine if it is fitting for him to continue to hear this case. How ridiculous is our legal system getting when its arrogance precludes such decisions being made by an independent and unbiased third party? At least that way the general public would be fooled into thinking there is some transparency and reasonable process. It compares to the RNC investigating criminal matters or charges against its own members. What a joke!

  • Not Surprised
    July 01, 2010 - 20:00

    I am in agreement with Howard, but this does not surpriseme, it seems the members of our justice system can do what they want, they are not accountable to anyone. It is absolutely ridiculous for a judge to make a decision on whether or not he should/could oversee a case without prejiduce. Of course he is not going to say he would be prejiduce, our justice system is a joke, and it is acts like this one that makes it the joke it is.

  • Willow
    July 01, 2010 - 19:53

    This is funny, but it shouldn't be. Why can't this decision be made by some independent body, so much for democracy. Another case for elected and not appointed judges.

  • GAR
    July 01, 2010 - 19:47

    It's nice of Justice Orsborn to discuss the matter with himself and agree with himsel that he should continue to preside over these cases. If he had disagreed with himself he likely would have overruled himself and then decide to agree with himself anyway. No doubt he listened to himself intently but didn't hear any dissenting opinions. So there you have it. Justice has been served. Move on, nothing more to be seen here.