Bruce Clark Archives - Letters - to Verna Friday - 2

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Bruce Clark Archives - Letter to Verna Friday

re: Regina v. Friday

section 2

This brings me to the crown attorney's libel that I am a "fugitive from justice." I am a "fugitive". But "for" not "from" justice. The crown attorney's false allegation against me illustrates admirably the modus operandi whereby in Canada the "constitutionally responsible rulers and officials" historically to date have gotten away with the treasonable and fraudulent genocide of the indigenous peoples generally. Furthermore, the history by which I became a fugitive is relevant to your defence, and to your appeal in the event of a conviction, since the fact that I am a fugitive means denial of counsel relative to the defence that you want to and are legally entitled to raise.

On February 11, 1973 some of the Family Heads of the Family Hunting Grounds, including yours, that traditionally traded at Temagami retained and instructed me as their lawyer to assert their allegedly unsurrendered aboriginal rights. According to the oral history of the tribe there was no valid purchase relative to the ancestral lands. Your people considered that this fact left them as masters in their own homeland: sovereign, for all practical purposes.

According to their instructions I pleaded their "sovereignty" when, in 1978, the Attorney General sued them in Supreme Court of Ontario Action Number 25198/78 for a court order declaring that, regardless of what your people think, they in fact had sold their aboriginal rights.

But it was not until after the trial that I discovered the rest of the story concerning the law that is crucial to the actual vindication of your assertion of legal continuity of those aboriginal rights and that sovereignty.

We newcomers do not have the court jurisdiction to decide when we have "purchased" your land, for that jurisdiction is vested in [[a]] court the judges of which unlike our judges are truly independent and impartial third parties to the purchase issue.

All that I really knew at the time of that trial was that there was such a thing as "aboriginal rights," which were supposed to exist until they had been extinguished by a "purchase" within the meaning of the Royal Proclamation of 1763.

At that time, I did not even realize that the Royal Proclamation was itself not constitutive of your right but, rather, merely recognized and affirmed a right the existence of which had been constituted in 1537.

After the trial however, inconsequence of reading for my masters degree in constitutional legal history and my doctoral degree in jurisprudence, I discovered that court jurisdiction to determine whether there had been such an extinguishing "purchase" is not vested in the particular court in which the Attorney General sued your people. He sued in the (presumptively biased) newcomers' court, the Supreme Court of Ontario, rather than in the (presumptively unbiased) special constitutional court created especially [[for]] the purpose [[of]] independently and impartially adjudicating the purchase issue.

When the penny dropped on the jurisdiction issue the Royal Proclamation's term "Misprisions" suddenly acquired a meaning. Up until that time I, like all the other lawyers and scholars who pore over the proclamation, simply glossed over that term.

The British legal dictionaries contemporaneous with the 18th century indicated that "misprision" was at that time a well understood form of contempt of constitutional instruments such as, for example, "royal proclamations." The legal point of the concept was that it dispensed with the need to adduce evidence of mens rea.

In virtue of the employment of this concept in the Royal Proclamation the crown's officials in the North American colonies were put on notice that they would be held responsible if surveys, land grants or settlements were made relative to lands that "not having been ceded to or purchased by Us are still reserved for the Indians."

It was in virtue, specifically, of threatening its colonial officials with the penal sanctions annexed to the crimes of "Misprisions of Treason and Fraud" that the imperial crown sought to control the pace of the European invasion into the Indian country of the interior of North America.

Later, I can remember reading in the newspapers about the suicides of the young Indians at Davis Inlet. A second penny dropped. I remembered the drinking parties spent with the rascally element of your people, and the inevitable juncture at which the sentiment became rage and then despair against the injustice of life under the boot heel of the white masters. The deaths by suicide, alcohol abuse, internecine violence of my friends and friends of friends suddenly formed a pattern with the appalling statistics of Indian mortality in Canada. Treated like subhuman animals by being concentrated on their cage-like reserves, the people responded in a fashion that the behavioral scientists might have predicted as inevitable. They sought escape in forms of self destructive behaviour. The pattern formed by the premature deaths of so many of my Indian friends and acquaintances and those of others about whom I read in the newspapers or in the statistics became visible, as did my duty as a human being. And the words of the Genocide Convention took on personal meaning. Every human who knows that genocide is happening and who can act so as to prevent it but does not, for whatever reason, by his inactivity aids and abets the genocide. I realized that that meant me, no less than the switchman on the rail line to Auschwitz who declined to reroute the train on the ground of futility or willful blindness or whatever. I realized that "If not you, who? If not now, when?" applies to everyone in the society in which the genocide is occurring.

There is no reasonable doubt that the systematic imposition of injustice in virtue of the willful blindness of the non-native court system is killing the indigenous people. And has been for a long time. When article 2(b) of the convention identifies the imposition of "serious mental harm" as a form of genocide, it is not only talking about some third world problem. It is talking about the Canadian Indian. When article 3(e) talks about "complicity in genocide," it is not talking just about engineers who drove trains to Auschwitz. It is talking about the Canadian police, lawyers and judges who refuse to read the legislative words that in theory guarantee respect for the fundamental rights and therefore the very humanity of the indigenous people of Canada. When article 4 says that the law against genocide applies to "constitutionally responsible rulers and officials" not less than to private persons, it is not just talking about the Nigerian judges who committed "judicial murder" by putting the noose round the neck of Ken Saro-Wiwa. It is talking about the Canadian lawyers whose inactivity, like my own until recently when I attempted to complete a citizen's arrest of some of the judges and police who are direct agents in the genocide, tacitly condones the judicial murders. Above all, it is talking about the judges whose willful blindness to the law precluding their own usurpation of the Indians' jurisdiction over themselves so diminishes some Indians' sense of self-worth as human beings as in effect to load and hand over the guns that by blowing out those Indians' brains serves as their escape to untormented oblivion. In Canada judicial murder has not only occurred, but has occurred and is occurring on a scale so graduated from isolated and dirty judicial murder, as to constitute institutionalized and sanitized judicial genocide: the "perfect" injustice - because the murderers run the justice system.

The impetus behind your peoples' instructions to me on February 11, 1973 was provided by local northern Ontario newspaper reports that the Province of Ontario planned to build an eighty million dollar destination ski resort on Maple Mountain, as if the Province was owner free and clear of the mountain. Your people wanted me to stop this from happening. "In our language," they said, "Maple Mountain is called Chee'Bai'Gin, which means where the spirits go. It is the place where life began - not a good place for hot dog stands to be built, and carnivals of trespassing pampered white people to be at play." My strange and despairing life adventure had begun. Now, some twenty-two years later I feel, like Chief Joseph, that it is past time for me to say "I will fight no more." For I am sickened beyond despair by what I have been forced to learn about the profound evil at the heart of the system of "justice" that I have sworn to serve.

Maple Mountain geographically is the second highest elevation in Ontario. Like the letter "T" it defines a height of land that establishes three continental watershed regions. To the north, above the T's cross stroke as it were, flow the waters en route to the Hudson's Bay lowlands. To the south west, to the left of and downwards from the T's down stroke, flow the rivers going to Lake Nipissing, which itself drains eventually into Lake Huron. To the south east, to the right of and downwards from the same down stroke, flow the waters leading to the lower St. Lawrence River via the Montreal and Ottawa Rivers.

The legal significance of this geographical configuration is that because your tribe does not occupy lands draining directly into Lake Huron it was not invited to the treaty designed in 1850 to purchase the lands of the Indians of the Lake Huron coast. Even so, the people of your tribe organized their lands into autonomous family Hunting Grounds. One of these belonged at the time of the 1850 treaty to a family head named Nebanegwune. His particular grounds were situate in the sector that articulated directly with Lake Nipissing. When the Nipissing Indians, also not invitees, interjected themselves into the 1850 treaty events they were accompanied by this Nebanegwune. A letter dictated by this Nebanegwune recently was discovered in the archives. In it, he admits his personal participation at the 1850 treaty signing. That fact is potentially crucial relative the purchase issue of the land of your people, including of course the Friday Family Hunting Grounds that are within your own several jurisdiction and possession. On the basis of this letter it is apparent, or at least arguable, that Nebanegwune sold his own Family Hunting Grounds to the crown in 1850.

Since the historic record is clear that the other people of your tribe not only were not invited but did not know about the treaty until after it was over, it would seem that the connection or adhesion of your people to that treaty has occurred upon the basis of incomplete information and, possibly, actual fraud on the part of the descendants of Nebanegwune. For it seems that, having secretly sold its own aboriginal rights in 1850, the Nebanegwune Family has defrauded the other indigenous people in subsequent years into negotiating with the crown upon the basis of a misrepresentation of fact. The purchase question ought to be addressed in the light of this new evidence.

Acting upon the basis of your instructions, which themselves were based upon my legal advice that you were entitled in law to give those instructions, I sought police assistance in the town of Haileybury in order search for and seize the crucial Nebanegwune letter. Reasonable and probable grounds existed for inferring that it was located in the office-residence of the historical researcher who had found it in the archives. Acting upon the advice of those of your people who wish to conceal Nebanegwune's participation in the treaty, the researcher refused access. The police refused help. Since no Indian purchase even arguably applies to Haileybury, I informed the police that they had no jurisdiction to prevent my carrying out the Indians' order to secure the letter for court purposes. The police officer threatened to charge me with trespass if I were to place my foot upon the researcher's yard. I informed the police that I would place my foot there, if not to get the letter then at least to establish a basis for a test case relative to the police jurisdiction.

I informed the police that their arrest of me for trespass would aid and abet treason, fraud and genocide. They brushed aside that information. I placed my foot upon the yard, brushing the officer who moved to intercept me. He placed me in handcuffs and charged me with assault. I restricted my defense to the issue of treason, fraud and genocide at the base not only of the police arrest of me but, in addition, at the base of the trial court's assumption of jurisdiction relative to land that prima facie was unpurchased Indian land. The court refused to address the legislative words going to jurisdiction.

The Court of Appeal did likewise. Further appeal was blocked when, on 6 July 1995, the Supreme Court of Canada held that the issue of jurisdiction was not of sufficient "importance" to justify the granting of leave of appeal in respect of it.

While I was in this reprehensible fashion being railroaded through the courts upon the basis of judicial willful blindness to the legislation that clearly and plainly establish[[es]] the criminality of the railroading judges' abuse of process, I understand that an attempt was made by some Indian people themselves to search for and to seize the Nebanegwune letter in the offices maintained on behalf of all tribal members. The members who are seeking to conceal the letter in order to commit a fraud against those who want the letter addressed in court reported the attempt to search for and seize the letter as a criminal break and enter. I believe this is the charge upon which you are scheduled to be arraigned as advised in the crown attorney's letter dated 18 November 1995.

In addition to these criminal law proceedings a series of civil law motions were brought by me upon the basis of your instructions to seek to have the two issues, court jurisdiction and Nebanegwune's actual fraud, addressed. Each time such a motion was delivered the Attorney General of Ontario (who is prima facie guilty of the treason, fraud and genocide attributable to the assumption of jurisdiction) made common cause with those Indians who are guilty of the fraudulent concealment from the courts of the Nebanegwune letter. Together, these culprits opposed the exposition of the truth, the exposition of which effectively indicts them.

In every instance each judge involved refused to address either the law going to jurisdiction or the facts going to fraud. Instead, the judges enjoined me from acting for you and you from raising the issues. When I sought on both our behalves to appeal this travesty to the Supreme Court of Canada, leave to appeal again was denied on 6 July 1995, on the patently fraudulent and exculpatory ground the issues were not of importance.

While these events were in progress I was seeking in other cases across Canada, in the United States and in Europe to have the same law addressed. Thus, on behalf of some Innu people of Quebec, some Stoney people of Alberta and some Lil'Wat, Shuswap and Okanagan people of British Columbia I filed the same basic application going to the jurisdiction of the newcomers' courts relative to the underlying issue of purchase. Not one judge in all of these cases addressed the existing law going to his or her own jurisdiction. The excuses and pretexts for evading the issue were so pathetically weak as themselves to evidence the actual fraud of the individual judges, over and above the constructive fraud that exists by operation of law upon the basis of misprision alone and without proof of mens rea.

All of the indigenous people for whom I acted in those related cases shared in common with you a spiritual motivation for persisting. And in each case my clients were opposed at every step of the way by other Indians of their tribe. Invariably, the opposing Indians were motivated to "share a bigger piece of the pie" economically resulting from the developments my clients are opposing, rather than to "waste" their energy on legal arguments, arguments that their lawyers assured them were doomed in any event precisely because the alleged criminals under the argument are the judges.

To my clients, the pie itself was poison and they could not see the point in conniving for a greater piece of something that meant death. The alteration of their personal environments in the name of progress was destroying the matrix from which arose their spiritual identity, and hence their reason for living.

Thus for example the Innu subgroup, for which I sought to bring forward the same argument as yours attempted by their bodies to block construction of a dam on the Moise River, the last great Atlantic salmon river. It drains into the north shore of the St. Lawrence River some distance above Quebec City. Hydro Quebec was in the course of harnessing its power. My clients feel that to contain the power of the river is to contain the power of their autochthonous culture, and thereby effectively to imprison and destroy those Innu who have not yet made the modern worlds' transition from the freedom of the spirit, to collecting and distribution of money based upon the destruction of the environment, as life's goal. My clients physically inhibited construction. In response, the tribesmen in the pay of the newcomers' governments asked for and received an injunction from the newcomers' court, ordering an end to the blockage of progress. My clients objected that the said court's assumption of jurisdiction was prima facie extraterritorial, there never having been a "purchase" of the region in question from the Indians.

The court treated that argument as invisible. The existence of the argument was simply not acknowledged. It was not rejected, as such. It just was not addressed. For breaching the resulting injunction (issued upon the basis of the judges' judicial willful blindness to the law establishing that their own assumption of jurisdiction is criminal) my clients have been tried and convicted by the same court system of criminal contempt of court. When my clients tried to raise in their defence the law establishing that the convicting court had no jurisdiction to convict them, they were informed that this amounted to a collateral attack upon the injunction itself, which was said to be not permissible, since the integrity of the rule of law requires that court orders be obeyed or else there will be anarchy.

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