Lawyer removed from First Nation case

A Yukon lawyer has been removed from a case pitting the Liard First Nation and the Yukon government against the Kaska Dena Council because of a perceived conflict of interest.

A Yukon lawyer has been removed from a case pitting the Liard First Nation and the Yukon government against the Kaska Dena Council because of a perceived conflict of interest.

Steve Walsh has been barred from representing the Kaska Dena Council since he would have been arguing against Liard First Nation, a group he has represented in the past.

The Kaska Dena Council took the Yukon government to court last year after Killdeer Minerals staked the Wildcat 92 mineral claim within its traditional territory. The BC-Yukon council represents five First Nation groups, including the Liard First Nation.

The Kaska claim it should have been consulted by the government before Energy, Mines and Resources granted Killdeer its mineral claims. That’s because the land – which Liard First Nation has yet to settle – is technically under its jurisdiction, it says.

Rather than join the Kaska, the Liard First Nation teamed up with the government to fight the group in court. The government has a duty to consult with the Liard First Nation and not the Kaska Dena Council, they claim.

Shortly afterwards, the Liard First Nation argued Walsh shouldn’t be allowed to represent the council and filed for case management with the judge.

The First Nation cited 11 different cases in which Walsh would have gained confidential information about the group that he could use against them in court.

The two primary instances where Walsh was unable to prove he wasn’t in conflict-of-interest was the First Nation’s 2004 Election Regulations act and the 1992 Simpson Lake Accord.

Both documents, which Walsh assisted the First Nation in writing and deals with the group’s constitution, would give Walsh an upper hand in arguing the Kaska are entitled to be consulted by the government.

Using case law, Judge Leigh Gower ruled he m ust disqualify Walsh from the case.

Chief Liard McMillan would not comment on the case as it is still before court.

No court date has been set for the original case as a second case-management file has been scheduled for August.

Contact Vivian Belik at

vivianb@yukon-news.com

Just Posted

Skagway Brewing Co. doubles seating, quadruples production

The new location is on Fourth Avenue, between the hardware store and the Starfire Thai restaurant

Leaders raise expectations for federal election at Yukon Forum

‘We really need to be respectful of the progress that we have made in a short period of time’

New procurement policy set to be up and running this spring

The last major procurement overhaul occurred in 1995, Mostyn said

Yukon hospital workers reach tentative deal to avoid a strike

The proposal will be voted on March 4, the union says

Longtime Yukon lawyer, former federal NDP candidate Melissa Atkinson dead at 45

Atkinson, who served as the territory’s first Indigenous Crown attorney, died the morning of Feb. 14.

German rookie wins 2019 Yukon Quest red lantern

Hendrik Stachnau was the last musher to cross the finish line

Hospital workers are prepared to strike

‘They’ve had enough’

Whitehorse mayor calls tax and fee increases reasonable

Council approved the 2019 operations budget

Team Yukon attends pep rally before heading off to Canada Winter Games

The Games are taking place in Red Deer, Alta., from Feb. 15 to March 3.

This year’s Sima Cup medals were delicious

A local bakery provided the prizes

Mushers of all sizes come out for the Babe Southwick Memorial Sled Dog Races

As the leading Yukon Quest mushers were nearing the finish of their… Continue reading

History Hunter: Mining on Dublin Gulch has a long history

A new gold mine is being developed north of Mayo that will… Continue reading

Yukonomist: Yukon carbon tax decisions

With the carbon tax coming into effect on July 1, you now… Continue reading

Most Read