Tag Archives: Superior Court of Quebec

Class action lawsuit against the City of Montreal

I’m looking for citizens who had their pets seized by the City of Montreal for various reasons including those who received an order to euthanize. Plans are under way to file for an authorization for a class action lawsuit against the city.

The City has refused to conform itself with two Superior Court Judgements that declare their methods invalid and illegal.

The 2007 case with Mario Paquet, nothing changed. The 2011 case with Sophie’s Dog Adoption and still nothing has changed. The City is still issuing bogus euthanasia orders. The city’s actions are in such a way as to interfere with the orderly administration of justice.

Enough is enough, the City hasn’t amended it’s By-law to reflect the invalidity of their By-law. We currently have proof that the City is still doing what it shouldn’t. I’m now reaching out to the public to gather more proof to justify a class action lawsuit. If you would like to get involved contact Sophie’s Dog Adoption at 514-523-5052 by phone or via e-mail at info@sophiesdogadoption.com

The People v. The System

Tired of hearing the same broken record over and over again by the “system” when dealing with animal abuse and neglect? The same tune keeps on playing, time after time, the “system” claims it has weak laws, no funds, and bigger problems to deal with. Do we really lack laws? Is the P-42 even constitutionally legal? What’s the deal with Anima-Quebec and it’s partnered SPCAs?

I think the problem is none of the above, the problem I see is simply incompetent people in charge. Anima-Quebec is a joke, MAPAQ the author of said joke. Only Anima-Quebec and MAPAQ can enforce the P-42 law (The Animal Health Protection Act of Quebec), the police can’t touch it. MAPAQ and Anima-Quebec make deals in order to avoid pressing charges, because the Crown Prosecutors are usually unwilling to accept said charges due to a lack of proof showing “intent” on the part of the defendant, as well as due to a job poorly done by the “system” in creating the so-called information file, the file used to prosecute the case in front of a Judge.

If one branch of the system is incompetent, we look at another branch such as the police to enforce the Criminal Code. Articles 445 and 446 specifically. The criminal code is a Federal law, applicable to all Provinces.

Causing unnecessary suffering

445.1 (1) Every one commits an offence who

  • (a) wilfully causes or, being the owner, wilfully permits to be caused unnecessary pain, suffering or injury to an animal or a bird;
  • (b) in any manner encourages, aids or assists at the fighting or baiting of animals or birds;
  • (c) wilfully, without reasonable excuse, administers a poisonous or an injurious drug or substance to a domestic animal or bird or an animal or a bird wild by nature that is kept in captivity or, being the owner of such an animal or a bird, wilfully permits a poisonous or an injurious drug or substance to be administered to it;
  • (d) promotes, arranges, conducts, assists in, receives money for or takes part in any meeting, competition, exhibition, pastime, practice, display or event at or in the course of which captive birds are liberated by hand, trap, contrivance or any other means for the purpose of being shot when they are liberated; or
  • (e) being the owner, occupier or person in charge of any premises, permits the premises or any part thereof to be used for a purpose mentioned in paragraph (d).


(2) Every one who commits an offence under subsection (1) is guilty of

  • (a) an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than five years; or
  • (b) an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term of not more than eighteen months or to both.

Failure to exercise reasonable care as evidence

(3) For the purposes of proceedings under paragraph (1)(a), evidence that a person failed to exercise reasonable care or supervision of an animal or a bird thereby causing it pain, suffering or injury is, in the absence of any evidence to the contrary, proof that the pain, suffering or injury was caused or was permitted to be caused wilfully, as the case may be.

Presence at baiting as evidence

(4) For the purpose of proceedings under paragraph (1)(b), evidence that an accused was present at the fighting or baiting of animals or birds is, in the absence of any evidence to the contrary, proof that he or she encouraged, aided or assisted at the fighting or baiting.

  • 2008, c. 12, s. 1.

Causing damage or injury

446. (1) Every one commits an offence who

  • (a) by wilful neglect causes damage or injury to animals or birds while they are being driven or conveyed; or
  • (b) being the owner or the person having the custody or control of a domestic animal or a bird or an animal or a bird wild by nature that is in captivity, abandons it in distress or wilfully neglects or fails to provide suitable and adequate food, water, shelter and care for it.


(2) Every one who commits an offence under subsection (1) is guilty of

  • (a) an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than two years; or
  • (b) an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term of not more than six months or to both.

Failure to exercise reasonable care as evidence

(3) For the purposes of proceedings under paragraph (1)(a), evidence that a person failed to exercise reasonable care or supervision of an animal or a bird thereby causing it damage or injury is, in the absence of any evidence to the contrary, proof that the damage or injury was caused by wilful neglect.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 446; 2008, c. 12, s. 1.

So the Police can replace SPCAs, Anima-Quebec and MAPAQ to investigate and lay charges, they at least know how to build these so-called information files! The problem in laying charges, is it won’t allow the police to seize unless they can see immediate danger to the animal. They can’t “search” without a warrant, a failure to provide reasonable care won’t validate a seize as per the criminal code. Animals are property and expropriation laws apply. If the police can’t legally seize, why can MAPAQ, Anima-Quebec and SPCAs? Why replace the police with administrative authorities? In order to violate Human Rights using  the P-42 as law!

Getting the police to act is not easy, most officers claim they have humans to protect, animals are not on their list. It’s the SPCA’s job they claim. Wrong they are! Enforcing the Criminal Code is their job. If they refuse to act, or if an SPCA or City refuses to act, said “authorities” can be charged under the Criminal Code, article 180.

Common nuisance

180. (1) Every one who commits a common nuisance and thereby

  • (a) endangers the lives, safety or health of the public, or

  • (b) causes physical injury to any person,

is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years.


(2) For the purposes of this section, every one commits a common nuisance who does an unlawful act or fails to discharge a legal duty and thereby

  • (a) endangers the lives, safety, health, property or comfort of the public; or

  • (b) obstructs the public in the exercise or enjoyment of any right that is common to all the subjects of Her Majesty in Canada.

  • R.S., c. C-34, s. 176.

The question to ask; is an animal considered both the public & property? The City of Montreal claims it needs to protect the public, thus outlawing a dog to bite another dog. So the usual answer to this question is yes. Animals are “the public’s property”. Article 180 can swing a good punch in a multitude of scenarios. If anyone such as an SPCA refuses to act within a legal right and duty to do so, they can be charged if it refuse to do their job (fail to discharge a legal duty).  Criminal charges have been laid against the “system”, in our case the SPCALL and Anima-Quebec. I can see hundreds of scenarios where charges like this can be laid against the system, all from past experiences with these so-called “administrative authorities”. If only I knew then, what I know now.

I’ve declared war with Anima-Quebec, MAPAQ and all it’s affiliated SPCAs because of their inaction over the years. I’ll be gathering more proof, laying multiple charges over and over again. The first step is to prove in Criminal Court that they have committed a crime, thus leading to civil lawsuits against the system in order to invalidate and nullify the P-42, and in turn tearing down Anima-Quebec & MAPAQ. The plan is to replace the P-42 with real laws, laws within the “Public Security Act” since a dog is both property and the public as the City claims, something that the police could use.  With the “system” committing a crime, you can demonstrate bad faith in Civil Courts. The Superior Court of Quebec can trash the law if it’s proven that it was used in bad faith, or replace those in charge if bad faith can be proven.

Municipal police have a duty to enforce municipal By-laws! The Municipality is their employer, which means the police can seize in hoarding situations by using municipal By-laws. However they cannot seize without a warrant, so why is it they don’t want to act and go get one? Now that we know, we can charge the cops of a crime too, that is if they refuse to do their job. Knowledge is power they say…

So next time the “system” says “nothing we can do about this”, tell them them that Articles 445, 446, and 180 of the Criminal Code show the contrary. If you have to, lay charges at the police station against the City, Municipality, SPCA, pounds, etc… If a police officer refuses to act, get proof and file a report at la deontologie policiere.

Since Quebec allows private prosecutions versus Crown prosecutions (a public prosecutor, hired by the Province or city) in criminal & penal cases, why do the SPCAs keep passing off the charges to the Crown? Would it not be better to do a private prosecution, like the Royal SPCA does? After all, it was the first SPCA and it’s very well aware of the lack of resources available to public prosecutors, be it a city prosecutor or Crown prosecutor. The old saying still holds true; if you want the job done well, do it yourself.

Tyson v. Montreal (T.K.O 1-0)

“Tyson 4” the Pitbull wins the first and biggest round against the City of Montreal in Superior Court. The City of Montreal wanted to euthanize “Tyson 4” because he bit and injured another dog. First the City ordered a 90 day muzzle order, only to replace said order one week later for a euthanasia order. The City claimed it would seize “Tyson 4” after 72 hours if he wasn’t executed. Of course Sophie didn’t comply, told the City they would need to find him, while they replied with the threat of daily fines for each day his execution wasn’t proven, as they gave Sophie the option to select the method of euthanasia (her own vet)  versus sending him to the Berger Blanc.

Knowing the City of Montreal “had” the power to seize without a warrant signed by a Judge to authorize such search & seizure, Sophie made “Tyson 4” jump (hidden on the Island, yet out of the City’s reach). Sophie filed a Motion in Superior Court asking the Courts to « DECLARE unconstitutional the sections of the City of Montreal By-Law concerning Dog and Animal Control, R.B.C.M. c. C-10, notably sections 12, 16, 18, 19, 20 and 22, which empower officials of the Respondent to enter a domicile and/or seize or euthanize a dog without warrant or due process ; » accompanied with a Stay of Execution against the euthanasia order so that “Tyson 4” could come out of hiding.

The first Judge allowed the case against the City, and issued an order that Sophie could take “Tyson 4” out of hiding for as long as he wore a muzzle at all times when in public or around other dogs, until his trial date. The second Judge, “trial Judge” heard the case which lasted 2 days and ruled in favor of “Tyson 4”, setting a precedent against the City of Montreal.


[137] In conclusion, the Tribunal want’s to underline that the case isn’t about if the dog is a danger to the public. That decision would be up to the municipal authorities. All tough before issuing such order, the City does need to respect the fundamental rules found in the Civil and Penal Code of Procedures, which wasn’t done in this present case.

[138] The Tribunal is therefore sensitive of the facts that Tyson’s behavior does justify the worries the City has. The Tribunal therefore takes notice of the agreement that Sophie is willing to keep the dog muzzled at all times when he is outside of his residence. For this agreement to be upheld, Sophie won’t be allowed to adopt out or dispose of “Tyson 4”.


[139] WELCOMES in part the motion;

[140] SQUASHES the euthanasia order issued in virtue of article 19 of By-Law concerning Dog and Animal Control, R.B.C.M. c. C-10, issued on the 14th of July 2010 targeting the male dog named “Tyson 4”;

[141] SQUASHES the fines issued to the Plaintiff for not having conformed to this euthanasia order within the delayed time;

[142] ORDERS the Plaintiff to comply with her agreement to keep the dog muzzled at all times when he is outside of his residence and ORDERS her to conform to it;

[143] ORDERS the Plaintiff not to get rid of the dog in question;

[144] DECLARES  invalid and null the words « saisir au domicile de son gardien » found in articles 12, 16, 25, 29 of the Règlement sur le contrôle des chiens et autres animaux (R.R.V.M. c. C-10);

With this jurisprudence, why hasn’t the City re-written it’s By-Law? They keep issuing these bogus letters claiming to be legal euthanasia orders, when in fact it’s not even worth the paper it’s printed on.

Sophie now decided to sue the City of Montreal $25 a day for the boarding fees incurred while “Tyson 4” was in hiding. The City refused to pay a $3,000 bill without knowing where “Tyson 4” was boarded. That is not for them to know, so a Judge will decide if the City has a right to know or not. Sophie is now asking for $6,000, $3,000 in fees, another $3,000 in punitive damages for a violation of her Human Rights.

The City claims this Judgement is only applicable for Tyson 4’s case, and therefore not valid towards any other euthanasia order the City is handing out.  With that said, Sophie has offered help for those willing to fight the City in Court. Since this Judgement, we are aware of 3 other cases that might end up in Superior Court against the City.

Tyson 4 – In April

Sophie Cognyl-Fournier


City of Montreal

April 11,12,13 – 2011

Sophie’s Arguments

  • Sophie’s expert witness proved that Tyson 4 was not a danger to humans, however because he was not properly socialized at a young age he’s not good with all dogs.
  • Sophie’s lawyer proved everything Sophie said and did, by putting her and the inspector on the stand.
  • Sophie’s lawyer proved the City did not make the necessary changes in the administration process since 2007 (The Renegad case – Mario Paquet vs City of Montreal), and that the same process was used on Sophie in 2010. The Judge had ruled it illegal in 2007 and that Renegad had been saved from euthanasia after biting a Montreal Police officer on the leg.
  • Sophie’s lawyer argued that if a dog is property it can’t be both the public and property. So how could property attacking a dog that is property be considered the public as the by-law states.
  • Sophie’s lawyer argued that if a dog is property, seizure requires expropriation laws as stated in the Quebec Charter of Rights, making it one’s civil right to own property. Therefore, as if it was land, a car or any property, she has to be compensated for “it” if legally taken away.
  • Sophie’s lawyer proved that the City had preformed illegal searches in her domicile since 2003 and that her domicile was her castle and that the city could not breech it without due process, as it is her constitutional right given to all Quebec citizens by the Quebec and Canadian Charter of Rights.
  • Sophie’s lawyer argued only the Attorney General of Quebec can contest the constitutional issues that would require those arguments void and null, however he refused to exercise that right, thus this court had to hear these arguments.

City’s Arguments

  • The City’s lawyers argued that Sophie could not fight the constitutional issues in this case and court, but in fact she could because the Attorney General of Quebec refused to exercise his right to defend the Charter of Quebec, so they argued on a 30 day limit from when Sophie’s lawyer came into the picture and sent an amended notice to the Attorney General. Sophie was representing herself so they argued they should have more time to prepare this case against a lawyer.
  • The City’s lawyers argued that it is too late for Sophie to contest this by-law based on it’s constitutional breech of rights, since it would have had to be done in a reasonable delay when it was created (1999) to protect the city from previous illegal search and seizures (in case this Judge was to rule it unconstitutional).
  • The City’s lawyers argued that this by-law was constitutional because they had to protect the “public”, and they had the right to breech people’s constitutional rights in prevention that someone refused to obey their order, therefore allowing search and seizure without a warrant and police presence and without due process (48hrs notice) in case the “dog” was to disappear, and that in this case Tyson 4 had disappeared.

Notes: The Judge hearing this case happens to be the same Judge that heard the Mario Paquet case in 2007. The City called Sophie a responsible pet owner and never argued that Tyson 4 should still be killed, they argued that it was their legal right and not unconstitutional.

The judge was forced to go into deliberations by the City.

L’interrogatoire sur l’affidavit de Sophie le 25 Novembre 2010