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April 23, 2002

Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration) v. Fast, 2002 FCT 542 (CanLII)

Date: 20020424

Docket: T-453-00

Neutral citation: 2002 FCT 542













PELLETIER J. This is my disposition of the issues arising from the questions and answers from the Examination for discovery of Mr. Fast which Mr. Vita seeks to have read into the record as part of his case. I had ruled earlier that counsel for Mr. Fast could seek to have other parts of Mr. Fast's discovery evidence read in as clarifying or explaining Mr. Fast's evidence. Clarifying or explaining refers to ensuring that the portions read in are not, within the four corners of the questions and answers themselves, misleading. Clarifying or explaining does not mean that other questions and answers
where Mr. Fast has given a different answer to the same question must be read in to clarify or explain the original answer.    One must bear in mind that the process of reading in questions and answers is one of putting the opposite party's admissions on the record. That party always has the option of taking the stand to explain away or qualify those admissions. But it is not the rule that those qualifications must go as part of the examining party's case. So, in dealing with requests for inclusions of clarifying or explanatory questions and answers, I generally asked myself whether the qualifying material showed either that Mr. Fast did not understand the particular question, or that the portion being read in was misleading in the sense of suggesting that Mr. Fast, at that point, was saying one thing when in fact he was saying another.   One of the issues in this matter is Mr. Fast's mental condition. In some cases, it was sought to have material read in to show that he was confused or that his answers were non-responsive to the question. I did not give effect to these submissions. Non-responsive answers are just that, non-responsive answers. They have very little evidentiary value. But if a party wishes to put them in as part of its case, that is its privilege. Similarly, the fact that Mr. Fast was at various times confused is not relevant except to the extent that it can be shown that he is confused about the particular question. If the answers to particular questions appeared to me to be coherent, I did not allow the surrounding questions and answers to be read in for the purpose of showing that apparently lucid answers were in fact not lucid.  
The defence was also allowed to challenge the inclusion of questions and answers where there were untranslated exchanges between the interpreter and Mr. Fast. I reviewed the videotape for the purpose of assessing these exchanges. I did not strike every question and answer in which there was an untranslated exchange because some of them seemed to me to be trivial, as for example a place name is repeated by both Mr. Fast and the interpreter. In the main however, I struck questions and answers where there were uninterpreted passages of any substance. Such passages created an unacceptable doubt as to whether the question answered was the question asked.   Finally, as a result of the process of exchanging positions on the questions and answers, many objections were resolved by agreement. Where that was the case, I have consolidated the two so that I only identified as contentious those questions on which there was no agreement. That said, what follows is the list of questions and answers that will go in as part of the plaintiff's case, subject to hearing further representations on questions 257 to 260 of Volume 1, and as to the inclusion of the videotapes, or portions of them, in evidence.   Uncontested                  Opposed                      Clarification       Decision Volume 1 77   Uncontested                  Opposed                      Clarification       Decision   90-100             101-103                                                excluded for translation 109 111-118 122-130 132-145 220-224 229-238 248-252                                                included: answers are sufficiently responsive to show understanding of question 257-260                        261-268            submissions to be made 270                                                       included: challenged for responsiveness 278 280
281                                                                   V.2 362-364    excluded: not clarification but simply a different answer to the question. 295-304                                                            videotape          to be dealt with under status of video. 322-323                                                            305-321            included: 322 and 323 are responsive. 305-321 do not qualify but merely show confusion. 331-332 339   Volume 2. p2. lines 5 - 12 11-12                                                    excluded for translation 48-49                                                    excluded for translation 51-60                                                    included except 56 which is excluded for translation 64-66                                                    included: translation not material 75-78                                                                79-82                excluded: 79 not clarification 80-82 excluded for translation. 104-107                                                included: translation problems not material 109                                                       excluded: translation 113-117                                                excluded: for translation 113-114 included: 115-117 119-129                                                excluded: for translation 119-123 included: 124-129 131-132                                                excluded: for translation 153-160   Uncontested                  Opposed                      Clarification       Decision   229-233                                                            234-239            excluded: Q. 229 to 233 unambiguous, no clarification required. 240-241                                                            242-245            excluded: does not clarify Q. 240-241. No confusion about ages. 254-259                                                included: except for 257 which is excluded for translation 260-262                                                included: translation not material 266-267                                                excluded: for translation 268                   excluded: does not clarify 269                                                       included: translation not material 270-275            excluded: does not clarify Q. 269 285-315                                                included: unopposed 307-309, 314-315
excluded: for translation 285-297, 302-303 included: 298-301, 304-307 310-313                                                excluded: for translation 310-311 included: 312-313 326-340                                                included: 326-328, 330, 332, 336, 339-340 excluded: for translation 329, 331, 333, 335, 338 366-369                                                excluded: for translation 367, 369 358-365            excluded: these are different answers to the same question. They do not clarify questions about application for naturalization 371                                                       included: no answer does not preclude inclusion 382-383                        384                                                       included: no answer does not preclude inclusion 389-391                                                            386-388            excluded: do not clarify following answers 396 400-403                                                excluded: for translation 405 408-411                                                excluded: for translation 418                                                       included: no answer does not preclude inclusion 414-451     Uncontested                  Opposed                      Clarification       Decision   Volume 3   1-22 34-40 41-42 43                                                         included: no answer does not preclude inclusion 59-74                                                                75-76                excluded: does not clarify 77-80 81-86 87-112                                                 113-118            included: clarifies issues of mother's nationality 119-128 143-144 147-149 151                                                       included: no answer etc.
157                                                       translation: cannot dispose of because my copy of tape is blank 158-161 167                                                       included: no answer etc 175                                                       included: no answer etc 185-186                        187                                                       included: no answer etc.   Volume 4   9-24 27-28   After counsel have reviewed this document to ensure that I have not made transcription errors or errors in the interpretation of their positions, there will be an order that the uncontested and included questions be considered as having been read into the record. The question of the exhibits will be dealt with separately.     "J.D. Denis Pelletier" _________________________   Pelletier J.A.                                      


  Names of Counsel and Solicitors of Record   COURT NO:                      T-453-00   STYLE OF CAUSE:                THE MINISTER OF CITIZENSHIP AND IMMIGRATION Plaintiff - and -   JACOB FAST Defendant   DATE OF HEARING:         WEDNESDAY, APRIL 24, 2002   PLACE OF HEARING:       TORONTO, ONTARIO   REASONS FOR ORDER BY:    PELLETIER J.   DATED:                   WEDNESDAY, APRIL 24, 2002     APPEARANCES BY:       Mr. Peter A. Vita, Q.C. Ms. Catherine Vasilaros Mr. Jeremiah A. Eastman   For the Plaintiff   Mr. Michael Davies Mr. Harold Mattson   For the Defendant   SOLICITORS OF RECORD:Morris Rosenberg Deputy Attorney General of Canada   For the Plaintiff   Bayne, Sellar, Boxal Barristers & Solicitors 200 Elgin Street Suite 500 Ottawa, Ontario K2P 1L5   For the Defendant
FEDERAL COURT OF CANADA     Date: 20020424   Docket: T-453-00     BETWEEN:     THE MINISTER OF CITIZENSHIP AND IMMIGRATION   Plaintiff     - and -         JACOB FAST   Defendant             REASONS FOR ORDER

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