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From: TSS ()
Subject: Mad Cow Class Action Against Federal Government Obtains Green Light from Quebec Court
Date: June 17, 2007 at 9:11 am PST

Mad Cow Class Action Against Federal Government Obtains Green Light from Quebec Court

MONTREAL, June 17 /CNW/ - In a landmark decision released late Friday,
June 15, 2007 Quebec Superior Court Justice Richard Wagner granted
authorization to a billion dollar class action suit, ruling that the mad cow
class action on behalf of some 20,000 Quebec cattle farmers against the
Federal Government will proceed to trial. This is an important step in
obtaining compensation for farmers following Canada's mad cow scandal
involving over 100,000 Canadian cattle farmers, including Quebec's
20,000 cattle farmers.
In April 2005, class action claims were filed cooperatively by a team of
lawyers in the courts of Quebec, Ontario, Saskatchewan and Alberta on behalf
of all commercial farmers of cattle resident in Canada as of May 20, 2003 (the
date at which Canada's International cattle and beef exports were frozen). The
claims allege that negligence on the part of the Federal Government caused the
BSE (Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy) crisis in Canada and the corresponding
loss of income to Canadian cattle producers. The statements of claim may be
viewed at
The class action lawsuits allege that the BSE crisis, the closing of the
U.S. and other international borders to Canadian cattle and beef, and the loss
of billions of dollars by the Canadian cattle industry were the result of
gross incompetence on the part of the Canadian government. Statistics Canada
confirmed in May of this year that Canadian cattle producers have lost more
than $9B in cash receipts since the BSE crisis began in May of 2003, an amount
which has been growing daily. To view this report, please visit
Quebec Attorney Gilles Gareau and Ontario's Cameron Pallett, co-counsel
in the Quebec action commented, "We applaud this decision as an important
milestone for all of Quebec's and Canada's cattle producers. We are confident
it will lead to eventual redress for hard-working farmers who have suffered
extensive damage and whose livelihoods have been compromised. It is a view
held by many experts that the BSE crisis would never have happened if the
Federal Government had not been asleep at the wheel. We would recommend that
all potential members of the class retain their financial records going as far
back as possible, as these records may be critical in determining the
financial damages they are entitled to recover.
According to documents filed in Quebec Court, government officials
jeopardized the safety of the Canadian food supply in failing to inform the
public that they had allowed 80 British cattle that were supposed to be in a
'monitoring program', to enter the human and animal food chain in Canada.
These same government officials' own risk analysis indicated that there was a
95% chance that 6 or more of these animals had BSE."
Although findings of liability against the Federal Government remain to
be made at trial, Mr. Gareau and his colleagues from across the country find
this a tremendous development for all Canadian cattle producers and urge them
to visit the BSE class action website to register and for more information

BSE is an incurable neurological disease of cattle that is transmitted
when healthy cattle eat the remains of infected cattle or other ruminants. The
claim alleges that the federal government was negligent in enacting, or
failing to enact in a timely fashion, regulations with respect to permissible
ingredients in cattle feed. It is also alleged that the federal government
negligently allowed more than 80 British cattle to enter the human and animal
food chain, and failed to warn cattle producers of the dangers posed by this
release of BSE into the cattle food chain when the government realized what
they had done.

For further information: please contact the following attorneys who will
be available to comment Sunday and Monday: Québec, Me Gilles Gareau, Adams
Gareau, Telephone: (514) 848-9363, Cell: (514) 966-7555,; Ontario, Cameron Pallett, Barrister & Solicitor,
Telephone: (416) 923-1776, Cell: (416) 473-0460,;
Saskatchewan, Reynold Robertson, Robertson Stromberg Pedersen LLP, Telephone:
(306) 933-1348, Cell: (306) 230-9980,; Alberta,
Clint Docken, Q.C., Docken & Company, Telephone: (403) 269-7656, Cell: (403)


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