Federal Court


Air Law

AIRPORTS
Cancellation of employee’s transportation security clearance upheld on judicial review

Employee worked for employer that operated out of airport. Employee had held transportation security clearance (TSC) since 2001. In 2013, Transport Canada received report from police indicating employee was involved in organized crime group that imported and exported drugs. Report noted lack of sufficient evidence to charge employee, but that he continued to facilitate movement of drugs with assistance of co-workers. Employee was notified his TSC was under review and was provided with information in report and given opportunity to make submissions. Employee denied any involvement in alleged incidents. Director General of Aviation Security cancelled employee’s TSC based on police report and recommendation of TSC Advisory Body. Employee brought application for judicial review. Application dismissed. Employee had not been denied procedural fairness, and Director General’s decision was reasonable. Duty of procedural fairness was at lower end of spectrum and was satisfied in this case. Employee knew allegations against him and had opportunity to make submissions. Decision was based on well-documented and extensive evidence with no suggestion of bias. Director General had wide discretion under s. 4.8 of Aeronautics Act (Can.), with respect to TSC. Decision was based on reasonable belief that employee could unlawfully interfere with civil aviation in accordance with TSC Program Policy. Director General was entitled to rely on police report, which was detailed and based on information from multiple law enforcement sources. Criminal convictions were not benchmark to justify revocation of TSC. Further, conduct at issue did not have to be direct interference with aviation security.

Brown v. Canada (Attorney General) (Nov. 14, 2014, F.C., Catherine M. Kane J., File No. T-1800-13) 250 A.C.W.S. (3d) 10.

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