One-mil­lion-dol­lar or­der

Case re­lates to CIDA agree­ment for re­de­vel­op­ment in Sri Lanka

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - FRONT PAGE - BY DOUG GALLANT dgal­lant@the­guardian.pe.ca Twit­ter.com/PEIGuardian

Four P.E.I. com­pa­nies have been or­dered to pay nearly $1mil­lion in court costs over a re­de­vel­op­ment pro­ject in Sri Lanka, a Supreme Court judge has ruled.

Those costs are to be paid by the Cana­dian Agro Sus­tain­abil­ity Part­ner­ship Inc., MacArthur Group Inc., Vet­eri­nary Man­age­ment Ser­vices Ltd. and Parker Potato Ltd.

And that is not the fi­nal num­ber with re­gards to cost.

Supreme Court Jus­tice Gor­don Camp­bell also or­dered that in­ter­est on that award shall ac­crue from the date the orig­i­nal judg­ment was is­sued, June 27.

Camp­bell also or­dered the par­ties to pay the at­tor­ney gen­eral a fur­ther $48,270.40.

The case re­volved around a con­tri­bu­tion agree­ment signed in 2006 be­tween the Cana­dian Agro Sus­tain­abil­ity Part­ner­ship Inc. (CASP) and the Cana­dian In­ter­na­tional De­vel­op­ment Agency (CIDA).

Pur­suant to the agree­ment CASP was to pre­pare a re­de­vel­op­ment plan for an area of Sri Lanka which had been sub­stan­tially de­stroyed by a tsunami in 2004.

By early 2008, dis­agree­ments had arisen be­tween the par­ties re­gard­ing the re­sults of an au­dit which re­viewed the ex­pen­di­tures by CASP of funds re­ceived from CIDA.

In Septem­ber of that year CASP com­menced an ac­tion against CIDA. Three ad­di­tional plain­tiffs were added to the ac­tion mid­way through 2012.

Be­tween Jan. 14, 2013 and June 25, 2013, the var­i­ous par­ties spent 38 days in trial.

A large vol­ume of ma­te­ri­als was pre­sented and the is­sues to be de­cided were com­plex.

Af­ter a se­ries of de­lays a lengthy de­ci­sion was is­sued on June 27, 2014.

The court ruled that the pith and sub­stance of this case was the in­ten­tional and undis­closed over­billing by CASP in the in­voices it sub­mit­ted to CIDA.

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