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BC Supreme Court Orders Increased Costs Against Director of Civil Forfeiture

Today the BC Supreme Court resolved an issue of costs between the Director or Civil Forfeiture and Angel Acres Recreation Ltd. as well as between the Director or Civil Forfeiture and members of the East End and Kelowna chapters of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club.

The costs followed more than 11 years of protracted litigation and a 49 trial after which the Director's claim for forfeiture of three Hells Angels Motorcycle Clubhouses was dismissed and the trial judge declared certain provisions of the Civil Forfeiture Act to be unconstitutional.

The Court found the defendants to be entitled to increased costs at Scale C because the litigation was of more than ordinary difficulty and the issues in the litigation were of significant interest to the parties and the general public. The case gave rise to unusual circumstances, the Court found, because of the seriousness of the allegations against the defendants, the importance of the litigation not only to the parties but also to the development of the law and to the public interest, and because of the disparity between ordinary costs and actual legal costs.

I acted for certain defendants in the litigation both at trial (here) and on the costs judgment (here).

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