Canadian Lawyer Magazine reports that a justice of the peace previously reprimanded for sexually harassing several court clerks is seeking to quash a decision of the Justices of the Peace Review Council, in which he was found him guilty of misconduct.
Justice of the Peace Errol Massiah filed the claim Jan. 30. His factum states that: “The applicant asserts excess of jurisdiction, breach of natural justice, fairness, and violation of his Charter rights and a lack of institutional impartiality and independence between subject tribunal and the Ministry of the Attorney General for Ontario and the attorney general and his agents. He also asserts inadequate representation of counsel.”
Massiah is seeking the Superior Court’s supervisory jurisdiction over the review council’s receipt, investigation, and adjudication of the allegations of misconduct.
The case involved complaints by six female staffers at the Oshawa courthouse. They said Massiah made them uncomfortable and alleged he commented on their looks, made sexually suggestive remarks, and eyed them up and down.
Massiah denied the allegations and said people misheard or misinterpreted his comments. A panel found him guilty of misconduct in 2012 and suspended him for 10 days.
Massiah alleges bias in the investigation, in particular due to the failure to put his written responses to the allegations to the complainants. He suggests the law firm that conducted the investigation overlooked some of his responses.
Massiah seeks to quash the misconduct finding and he is asking for $35,000 in costs.
Massiah faces a fresh set of sexual harassment allegations. Five more female court staff members, including a provincial prosecutor and another justice of the peace, have complained about inappropriate behaviour.