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Ken McEwan, Q.C. successful in having the BCSC grant a rare mistrial Order

Ken McEwan, Q.C. was recently successful in having the British Columbia Supreme Court grant a rare mistrial order, in a judge-alone trial and following reasons for judgment that had initially been issued: Manning v. Dhalla, 2019 BCSC 1067. In the underlying litigation, the plaintiffs claimed that the defendant referred them to a Ponzi scheme while concealing the fact that he was receiving commissions from the orchestrator of the scheme – Rashida Samji – for doing so. At trial, the defendant denied receiving any commissions, while Ms. Samji testified that she did pay him commissions, but could not recall precise details. In the absence of documentary support for the claim, the court preferred the defendant’s testimony. On the basis of documents which came to light after the reasons were issued, the court concluded that “the plaintiffs appear to have found a ‘smoking gun’. The only way to avoid a miscarriage of justice is through a new trial with the evidentiary gun in evidence.” Ken was retained to argue the mistrial application, with Arden Beddoes of Arvay Finlay.  Mark Underhill, also of Arvay Finley and Arden Beddoes were counsel at trial. The reasons for judgment can be found here.

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