Who's suing whom?

Our semi-regular roundup of the oddball cases winding their way through the nation's court system

British Columbia: A farmer sued a local fish habitat conservation agency, claiming its criticism of his plan to dump 100,000 truckloads of dirt was eroding the value of his property. He sought $13 million in damages. Dismissing the case, a judge called his claims “greatly exaggerated” and “fabricated.”

Alberta: A denture-wearing Edmonton woman is suing a candy company for $100,000, arguing their brand of chewing gum threw her into temporary depression. She claims the gum broke apart and got stuck in her dentures. Her depression lasted 10 minutes, while she scrubbed the gum from the crevices in her false teeth.

Saskatchewan: A Regina family is suing their provincial energy company after a gas leak explosion knocked their house off its foundation last Boxing Day. They allege the company neglected to perform regular checks on an underground gas line that was apparently seeping into their basement. The blast occurred when their clothes dryer ignited the leaked gas, injuring four people.

Ontario: A Windsor doctor filed a $14.2-million lawsuit against a local policeman, alleging the officer beat him senseless without provocation last year. The incident occurred after the cop’s daughter complained of being approached during a tennis lesson by a man matching the doctor’s description. The cop spotted the doctor outside a medical centre. After the alleged beating, the cop’s wife informed him he had the wrong guy.

Quebec: A Canadian mining juggernaut filed a $6-million defamation lawsuit against the authors and publishers of Noir Canada: Pillage, corruption et criminalité en Afrique, a book critical of mining practices in Africa. Quebec Superior Court dismissed the case, pointing to how the company threatened legal action even before reading the book, adding that the lawsuit “seems to be trying to intimidate authors.”

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