Brink’s law­suit dis­missed

The Prince George Citizen - - Front Page - Mark NIELSEN

A long-run­ning le­gal bat­tle be­tween Prince Ge­orge lum­ber man­u­fac­turer John Brink and BCR Prop­er­ties Ltd. over the state of the site where he had planned to build a sawmill has come to an end.

A con­sent dis­missal or­der was filed Dec. 12 stat­ing that the pro­ceed­ing be dis­missed with­out costs to any party and that the dis­missal is “for all pur­poses of the same force and ef­fect as if judg­ment had been pro­nounced af­ter a hear­ing of this ac­tion on its mer­its.”

The or­der is signed by the lawyers rep­re­sent­ing Brink and BCR Prop­er­ties.

The mat­ter – a dis­pute over the con­di­tion of a prop­erty at 1077 Bound­ary Rd. in the BCR In­dus­trial Site – had been set to go to trial this past Mon­day and was to last 44 days, ac­cord­ing to a trial brief sub­mit­ted by BCR Prop­er­ties.

Con­sent dis­missal orders are typ­i­cally is­sued when the plain­tiff has de­cided there is no chance of get­ting a favourable judg­ment or the par­ties have reached an out of court set­tle­ment. Nei­ther Brink nor BCR Prop­er­ties re­turned phone calls from The Cit­i­zen for re­quests for com­ment.

How­ever, a land ti­tle search shows the prop­erty was trans­ferred to a new owner – a num­bered com­pany with the same River Road ad­dress where Brink For­est Prod­ucts Ltd. is lo­cated – on Dec. 11, the day be­fore the or­der was filed at the court­house in Prince Ge­orge. The mar­ket value was $1.5 mil­lion, ac­cord­ing to a trans­fer doc­u­ment.

Brink had been leas­ing the site with an op­tion to pur­chase.

In mid-2005, Brink had started con­struc­tion of a new sawmill at the site. With the re­gion’s forests awash in bee­tle-killed pine, time was of the essence and the aim was to have the op­er­a­tion up and run­ning quickly.

Within six months, Brink had con­structed the foun­da­tions and the mill’s su­per­struc­ture and had in­stalled a num­ber of ma­chines with the in­tent to start pro­cess­ing logs by the com­ing win­ter.

But then the worked stopped and in 2009 the first of a se­ries of law­suits was filed in a dis­pute over the prop­erty’s fair value.

Brink had claimed BCR Prop­er­ties ne­glected to in­form him the site in­cluded a 22-acre land­fill con­tain­ing a num­ber of toxic sub­stances. He al­leged it ef­fec­tively re­duced the amount of land that could be used for the mill to 60 acres from the ex­pected 100 and that it would cost $12.75 mil­lion to re­me­di­ate the site.

BCR Prop­er­ties had de­nied all the al­le­ga­tions.

CIT­I­ZEN FILE PHOTO

A law­suit by John Brink, pres­i­dent of Brink For­est Prod­ucts Lim­ited, against BCR Prop­er­ties has been dis­missed.

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