Six stories in the news for Thursday, Feb. 14
QUADRIGACX CASE TO RETURN TO HALIFAX COURT TODAY
The bizarre case involving the cryptocurrency firm QuadrigaCX is expected to return to a Halifax courtroom today. The Nova Scotia Supreme Court has been asked to determine which law firms will represent 115,000 QuadrigaCX clients, who are owed as much as $260 million in cash and cryptocurrency. The court-appointed monitor overseeing the search for the money said it recently found more than $900,000 in digital assets. The Vancouver-based exchange was shut down Jan. 28 following the sudden death of its CEO, 30-year-old Gerald Cotten. He led his five-year-old virtual business from a home north of Halifax.
OTTAWA TO PRESENT ITS CASE FOR A CARBON TAX
Lawyers for the federal government and its supporters are to make their case today in a Regina court on why they believe Ottawa has the legal power to impose a carbon tax on Saskatchewan. Ottawa says it can put a price on carbon because climate change and the regulation of greenhouse gas emissions are a national concern. On Wednesday, lawyers representing Saskatchewan and its allies in the fight against a carbon tax argued the case is not about climate change at all. Instead, Saskatchewan lawyer Mitch McAdam presented the case as a being about the balance of power between Ottawa and the provinces in a situation where the federal government is overstepping its jurisdiction.
DOCS DETAIL EI SICKNESS-BENEFIT SHORTFALLS
An internal government survey of people who used federal sickness benefits has found that nearly half were unable to work for longer than the 15 weeks the benefits last. The newly released documents detailing the results from a survey of people who did — and did not — claim Employment Insurance sickness benefits showed that of those who did receive payments, 48.6 per cent said they were unable to work for 15 weeks or more. The survey was among the first pieces of research in a sweeping review of the sickness benefit, which hasn't been updated since it was introduced in 1971. Advocates say the figures support a years-long push, recently renewed in the House of Commons, to expand the program and provide more weeks of payments.
SAILOR SHORTAGE CAUSING HEADACHES FOR NAVY
A shortage of sailors is making it hard for the Royal Canadian Navy to operate its ships and work on replacing them at the same time, according to a senior naval officer. The revelation by Commodore Steve Waddell, head of naval strategic readiness, follow similar concerns from the Royal Canadian Air Force about the difficult choices it is facing thanks to a shortage of experienced pilots. Taken together, they underscore the severe personnel challenges facing some parts of the Canadian Forces, which tend to be overshadowed by the numerous problems facing the military procurement system. In fact, Waddell indicated during a presentation to a defence conference this week that the navy's personnel shortages could threaten the Trudeau government's "ambitious" defence policy.
ELECTION MAY SIDELINE SAFE OPIODS: ADVOCATE
The co-founder of a national group of parents whose children have fatally overdosed fears the federal government is unlikely to come up with a policy on safer opioids during an election year. Leslie McBain of Moms Stop the Harm says the overemphasis on addiction treatment hasn't worked because nearly 1,500 people died of overdoses in British Columbia last year, slightly more than the year before. She says those struggling with addiction continue to die from fentanyl-laced drugs they're buying on the street because safer alternatives are not available or to very few people in limited programs.
ISIL SUPPORTER TO BE SENTENCED FOR TERRORISM
A woman found guilty of terror charges for attacking workers at a Toronto-area Canadian Tire store is expected to be sentenced today. Rehab Dughmosh was found guilty of four terrorism-related charges after attacking workers with a golf club and butcher's knife while draped in an ISIL banner in June 2017. She had also previously tried to travel to Syria to join ISIL, and one of the charges stemmed from that incident. Crown prosecutors have requested an eight-year sentence, saying their proposal takes into count Dughmosh's mental illness as well as the need to denounce her actions. The judge overseeing the case was to review Dughmosh's psychiatric assessments and her treatment records from jail before deciding on a sentence.
ALSO IN THE NEWS:
— A sentencing hearing will be held for Matthew Percy, a former Saint Mary's University groundskeeper who was found guilty of sexual assault and voyeurism.
— Ontario Premier Doug Ford and Todd Smith, minister of economic development, will make an announcement in Woodbridge, Ont., about the province's auto sector.
— TransCanada Corp. will hold a teleconference and webcast to discuss its fourth quarter 2018 financial results.
The Canadian Press