Lawsuit of the week: Port authority goes to court to dismantle Surrey homeless encampment

The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority is suing a group of unknown defendants who allegedly occupy an illegal encampment set up on the authority’s land in August 2017.

The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority is suing a group of unknown defendants who allegedly occupy an illegal encampment set up on the authority’s land in August 2017.

The port authority filed a notice of civil claim in BC Supreme Court on February 15, naming John Doe, Jane Doe and Persons Unknown as defendants. It claims the defendants “are trespassers on the lands” in Surrey, which include both surveyed lots and unsurveyed federal Crown-owned lands in Surrey.

“In particular, the defendants have established and have been present at an encampment upon the lands and have resided on the lands at times since at least in or about August 2017,” the claim states. “In addition to John Doe and Jane Doe, other persons have, from time to time, been present on the lands and have resided at the encampment, and those persons are also trespassing on the lands.”

“The defendants intend to continue the trespass unless restrained from doing so,” the claim states.

The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority seeks damages for nuisance and trespass and “injunctions to restrain the defendants from trespassing upon the lands by in any way residing on, setting up or occupying an encampment on, or otherwise entering upon the lands.”

The allegations have not been tested or proven in court, and no responses had been filed by press time.