From Wednesday's Globe and Mail Published on Wednesday, Mar. 17, 2010 12:00AM ED
A lawyer disciplined for allegedly sexually harassing a secretary and allegedly having sexual relations with a client deserves a new hearing, the Ontario Court of Appeal ruled yesterday.
Gary Neinstein, a Toronto personal injury lawyer, has been fighting the Law Society of Upper Canada since it ordered him disbarred in July, 2004.
That decision was subsequently overturned, in favour of a three-month suspension. Mr. Neinstein has consistently denied all of the allegations against him.
In a written decision released yesterday, Mr. Justice David Doherty ruled that the Law Society's disciplinary panel failed to say in its decision how it weighed contradictory evidence in what the judge described as a "classic 'he-said-she-said' case."
The judge ruled that the Law Society's reasons were "so deficient as to constitute an error in law," tossing out the decision and ordering a new hearing for Mr. Neinstein.
A spokesman for the Law Society said the organization was reviewing the decision.
Mr. Neinstein's lawyer, Brian Greenspan, said it is now up to the Law Society to decide whether to proceed with a new hearing, or to let the matter go.
"Hopefully those who criticized him, and hopefully those who were prepared to accept the flawed findings of the Law Society, will now at least re-evaluate it and permit the whole matter to start at square one, which is the presumption of innocence," Mr. Greenspan said.
He stressed that his client has spent much of the past decade with a cloud over his reputation because of the allegations.
Mr. Neinstein faced allegations of sexual harassment from a secretary in his office and a client, dating back to 1988.
The Law Society ordered him disbarred in 2004. In 2005, that decision was set aside by a Law Society appeal panel. The Divisional Court upheld the misconduct findings, but decided a three-month suspension was the appropriate penalty.
Last year, Mr. Neinstein took that decision to the Ontario Court of Appeal, which ruled in favour of a new hearing.
Meanwhile, the lawyer's conduct inside the courtroom has also come under scrutiny. Last December, an Ontario Superior Court judge ordered a mistrial in a personal injury case in Whitby, Ont. Written reasons for the mistrial, released last month, cited the "uncivil" and "offensive" conduct of Mr. Neinstein.
Law Society spokesman Roy Thomas would not say whether it is investigating that matter.
Mr. Greenspan said Mr. Neinstein has retained another lawyer, Chris Paliare, in relation to the mistrial. Mr. Paliare was not available to comment in detail on the mistrial case.
he Ontario Court of Appeal is a cess pool of hatred towards men. To get to be
a judge on the Ontario Court of Appeal you generally have to be politically
correct and that means making draconian decisions against men.
The reality is rarely a decision goes a mans way in the Ontario court of Appeal.
Most telling is the orders for COSTS, that's right, this is where the real decision is made.
A man may be partially or fully successful but will generally be hit with a massive costs penalty that says, "that's your penalty for being a male and having the audacity to ask relief from the Ontario Court of Appeal.
The court of appeal is "the church" operated by the Legal Cartel for the Legal Cartel, you will almost never see or hear of a successful law suit for malicious prosecution, abuse of power, or legal negligence. The court of appeal makes sure those appeals never get heard.
Its not about the people, the issues or the law, its about "finality of litigation" that means the Court of Appeal almost never ever accepts or allows "fresh evidence".
Times change, where chronic injustice has occurred, the trail of fabricated evidence continues with lawyers relying upon blatantly fabricated evidence that was accepted by some prior judge for corrupt reasons.
Its that wanton, blatant desire to "engage in the process of justification" that gives the Ontario court of Appeal a very bad odour , its the odour of death, fear, intimidation, you are just as likely to smell it in a torture chamber, an execution chamber or in a crowded room full of victims oozing the smell of terror and fear.
Also oozing out of the walls of the court of appeal is the hatred towards men and its just as obvious.
This appeal, is most unusual, its an appeal by a lawyer about a decision by the law society who decided to go for "she said" when there was no corroborating evidence.
Neinstein realy lucked out with Doherty.