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B.C. logging company launches lawsuit against Fairy Creek protesters

Teal Cedar takes legal action over alleged conspiracy and obstruction in forest protest
Elders for Ancient Forests along with people declaring themselves “land defenders” take part in a peace circle along a logging road in the Fairy Creek logging area near Port Renfrew, on Oct. 5, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)

Teal Cedar, the logging company embroiled in a controversy over old-growth trees near Port Renfrew at Fairy Creek, has filed a lawsuit against 15 people and entities, alleging a conspiracy to harm the company.

The lawsuit, filed in B.C. Supreme Court, also targets Atleo River Air Service and the Rainforest Flying Squad, described as an “unincorporated association of persons.”

Court documents claim the defendants are accused of obstructing and delaying Teal Cedar and its contractors from conducting road construction and forestry work in the Fairy Creek area. The alleged actions included setting blockades, creating safety hazards, and impeding the company’s operations.

The legal action contends that the defendants orchestrated blockades, recruited participants, and engaged in fundraising activities to sustain the protests, resulting in financial losses and damage to Teal Cedar’s reputation and goodwill.

If successful, the lawsuit may result in a $10 million liability for the named individuals and entities.

None of the allegations have been proven in court.

Despite logging activities in the area being deferred until 2025 and the expiration of the injunction preventing protesters from blocking access, the dispute has shifted to the legal arena.

The activists, who were at the forefront of what has been termed the largest act of civil disobedience in Canadian history, went on to face legal ramifications.

The 2021 protests against logging old-growth trees at Fairy Creek resulted in approximately 1,000 arrests. Teal Cedar, holding Tree Farm Licence 46 that grants harvesting rights in the area, took legal action against those accused of disrupting its operations.

Of the more than 400 individuals charged, roughly half pleaded guilty, with many having their charges dropped. A small number were convicted.

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Kevin Laird

About the Author: Kevin Laird

It's my passion to contribute to the well-being of the community by connecting people through the power of reliable news and storytelling.
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