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Decision on Ottawa counsel’s testimony expected to start February 7 Taxi trial proceedings

9:30 am February 7 update: Justice Smith delivered his decision regarding the concepts of “solicitor/client privilege” and the fact that Ottawa’s legal counsel Stuart Huxley’s testimony in describing directions he was provided as “hearsay evidence” if he was discussing direction given to him by City staff.

Justice Smith indicated his decision is that Huxley could not invoke “solicitor/client privilege” when asked questions about directions he received. Ottawa legal counsel requested a 30 minute break to assess its plans given this new information.

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February 7th Ottawa Taxi trial proceedings are expected to begin with a decision by Justice Marc Smith on the testimony of Ottawa’s legal counsel Stuart Huxley.

As the last item of the proceedings on February 6th, counsel for the plaintiff Abdalla Barqawi raised the issue of the propriety of having Huxley testify on directions given to him by City Staff as the City re-wrote its Taxi by-law in 2016.

Barqawi and his associates at Conway Litigation have asked Justice Marc Smith for guidance on the subject of “hearsay evidence.” Barqawi pointed out yesterday that anything Huxley has say about City directions must be considered “hearsay” evidence.

“The court has the right to question the source of the directions, the person who made the decisions and provided direction to Mr. Huxley,” Barqawi suggested to Justice Smith.

“The idea that the City would have provided no instructions, I find that to be odd… somebody at the City was definitely providing instructions to Mr. Huxley; he was not acting on his own. He could not have done that.”