‘Defying The Law’

The Supreme Court of Canada {‘R. v. Marshall; R. v. Bernard’ (2005 SCC 43) See below} already determined that this logging business is NOT covered by Treaty and therefore, is illegal…

“A Wolastoqew (Maliseet) logger who’s harvesting lumber from Crown land outside of provincial regulations says an investigation by conservation officers is violating his ‘treaty right’ to earn a moderate livelihood.

“Patrick Paul, 30, from St. Mary’s ‘First Nation’ {a ‘nation’ of 1,928 people} near Fredericton, N.B., has been running a wholesale firewood operation for three years. He works by himself, harvesting with a chainsaw and a logging tractor, 30 km north of his community.

“Paul said he’s part of a group of 16 other ‘First Nations’ {aboriginal} entrepreneurs running similar operations. They’re calling themselves “Wabanaki Loggers” after the 17th century alliance of the Mi’kmaq, Wolastoqiyik, Peskotomuhkati, Abenaki and Penawapskewi peoples.

It’s unceded territory“,
Paul said.
The Crown calls it Crown land, but I call it [‘First Nations’] {aboriginal} land.”

“Around the end of March, Paul said he was visited by two conservation officers at his woodlot.

They informed me that I couldn’t sell, barter or trade the wood, and if I did, [there] would be consequences up to a $10,000 fine and seizure of equipment“,
Paul said.
My response was we have the right to harvest the wood for a moderate living, and I didn’t see anything wrong with it.”

“Paul said that soon after their visit, he discovered that a hidden camera he’d set up to monitor his logging equipment captured the same officers visiting his woodlot at night, when he wasn’t there, handling and cutting some of his logs. Paul said he remembered that his father, who was also a logger, told him conservation officers had once marked his wood with ink that was visible only under ultraviolet light, so Paul purchased a black light to check his woodpile.

I turned [it] on, and every stick of it was marked.”

“He said initials written on the wood matched the first and last names of the two officers that he’d been speaking with at his woodlot.

“Paul said he has lost at least three clients and an important delivery contractor since the investigation began. Andrew Booker, a friend and client of Paul’s, said he was visited by the officers twice after having his wood delivered.

They told me they were putting together an investigation, a case, against Native wood harvesting“,
Booker said.
They asked me for a statement and how much I paid for it and who I bought it from.”

“Booker wasn’t at home during one of the visits, but said a family member told him that the officers cut sections of his wood delivery and took them when they left. Booker said Paul has always provided him with the required delivery papers, so he’s always considered his business to be legitimate. He said if the province takes issue with a logging operation, the clients shouldn’t be the ones to receive charges or fines.
{Possession of stolen property is a crime…}

I told them that their problems are with [‘First Nations’ {aboriginal} harvesters], not me.”

“Roy and Margaret Anderson, owner-operators of a small trucking business outside of Fredericton, have known Patrick Paul since he was a child. They’d been delivering Paul’s timber once a week for around eight months when conservation officers visited them and asked them for a statement and documentation…

“Anderson said she and her husband were no longer going to be hauling Paul’s wood for fear of losing their truck and their own livelihood.

If he’s done something wrong, I feel for him. I really do. I really think that he felt he was on the up and up.”

“Two of Paul’s other clients confirmed that they’d been visited by the same conservation officers near the beginning of April, and said that as a result of the investigation, they may not purchase wood from Paul in the future.

“Paul said he believes that the officers are choosing to eliminate the ‘First Nations’ {aboriginal} loggers’ market by targeting their clients, instead of charging the loggers with illegal harvesting which would allow them to use their treaty rights as a defence. 
(A ‘treaty right’ that was already ruled bogus by the Supreme Court of Canada…}

We have a {race-based} ‘right’ to the land as people“,
he said.
We always have, since first contact. And I don’t think they want to put it in the [court] system because they know that we’ll prevail.”

“He said he thinks the time and resources being spent investigating his operation is wasteful and unnecessary.

“A spokesperson for the New Brunswick Department of Justice and Attorney General said the department is unable to comment on open investigations, but in an emailed statement said Crown prosecutors, not conservation officers, determine if charges are to be laid against wood harvesters. The New Brunswick Public Prosecution Service must determine that there is sufficient admissible evidence, public interest and a “reasonable prospect of conviction{In this case, it’s a certain prospect of conviction. The precedent has already been set}, the statement reads. The statement said conservation officers investigate alleged illegal wood harvesting “within the scope of their authority“, but declined to comment on investigation methods.

Such information is recognized judicially as privileged information not for public dissemination“,
the statement said.

“Since 1999, New Brunswick has {discriminatorially} set aside five per cent of the annual allowable timber harvest on Crown lands for commercial agreements with the 15 Wolastoqey and Mi’kmaw communities in the province…

Paul said he chose not to work with his community’s forestry program, which harvests within the five per cent allotment, because it would require paying fees for things like road clearing, site management, transportation and royalties {!?!}
{So he chooses illegality, instead…}

“Speaking for some of the Wabanaki Loggers group, Paul said that they do not intend to stop their {illegal} operations. He said that while they would prefer not to tolerate costs of a long legal battle, they are prepared to go to court to seek clarification on their right to earn a moderate livelihood.

I would like it to get settled so we can have our right to go harvest wood as we please, without getting harassed“,
he said.”

–‘First Nations’ logger says conservation officers are eliminating his market instead of laying charges’,
Nic Meloney, CBC News, May 24, 2019

Paul harvests wholesale firewood from a site north of Fredericton, N.B. (Patrick Paul)

From the Supreme Court of Canada:
The treaties of 1760-61 do not confer on modern Mi’kmaq a right to log contrary to provincial regulation. The truckhouse clause of the treaties was a trade clause which only granted the Mi’kmaq the right to continue to trade in items traditionally traded in 1760-61. While the right to trade in traditional products carries with it an implicit right to harvest those resources, this right to harvest is the adjunct of the basic right to trade in traditional products. Nothing in the wording of the truckhouse clause comports a general right to harvest or gather all natural resources then used. The right conferred is the right to trade. The emphasis therefore is not on what products were used, but on what trading activities were in the contemplation of the parties at the time the treaties were made. Only those trading activities are protected. Ancestral trading activities, however, are not frozen in time and the question in each case is whether the modern trading activity in issue represents a logical evolution from the traditional trading activities at the time the treaties were made. Here, the trial judges applied the proper test and the evidence supports their conclusion that the commercial logging that formed the basis of the charges against the accused was not the logical evolution of a traditional Mi’kmaq trading activity in 1760-61{In addition} The accused did not establish that they hold aboriginal title to the lands they logged…”

“…On the facts of these cases, the evidence supports the conclusion that trade in forest products was not contemplated by the parties and that logging is not a logical evolution of the activities traditionally engaged in by Mi’kmaq at the time the treaties were entered into.”

–‘R. v. Marshall; R. v. Bernard (2005 SCC 43)’,
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1 Comment

  1. Many Aboriginals are really not civil, not doing things legally, are racist/hateful/self important/self absorbed and becoming more intolerable with their poor me, I hate and blame Whites attitude!!


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