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8 Jun 2017

The Canadian Centre for International Justice & CALAS

Supreme Court of Canada declines to hear appeal by Vancouver mining company in Guatemalans’ lawsuit

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The Supreme Court of Canada today declined to hear an appeal by Tahoe Resources Inc. in a Canadian lawsuit brought by several Guatemalan men for injuries they suffered during the violent suppression of a peaceful protest at Tahoe’s mine in Guatemala.

Earlier this year, the British Columbia Court of Appeal rejected efforts by Tahoe to dismiss the case, and the Supreme Court’s action today leaves that judgment intact, clearing the case to go to trial in Canada...

The Court of Appeal ruled in January that the case should remain in British Columbia as a result of several factors, including evidence of systemic corruption in the Guatemalan judiciary, that pointed away from Guatemala as a preferable forum for the case...

Until recently, the legal doctrine of forum non conveniens had been an obstacle for foreign victims of corporate abuse seeking redress in Canadian courts. The doctrine gives courts discretion to dismiss a case in favour of a foreign jurisdiction in certain circumstances and had previously shielded Canadian companies, particularly in the extractive sector, from judicial scrutiny of their overseas operations...

Part of the following timelines

Canada: Supreme Court declines to hear appeal by Tahoe Resources in lawsuit over shooting at Guatemala mine

Tahoe Resources lawsuit (re Guatemala)