A medicinal marijuana producer has been ordered — once again — to vacate a property in Central Saanich by a judge.
On Dec. 23, Evergreen Medicinal Supply Inc. was ordered by B.C. Court of Appeal Justice Joyce DeWitt-Van Oosten to vacate the bunker-like facility near Michell’s Farm, which is used to grow cannabis, by Jan. 31, 2020. This comes after Evergreen was already ordered to vacate by Aug. 31 by a Supreme Court Justice back in July.
The lengthy court battle between Evergreen and Phillip Illingworth, the property owner, dates back to 2017 and has seen multiple petitions filed by Illingworth asking for a declaration that Evergreen is wrongfully in possession of the land and premises.
In the latest turn of events, Evergreen filed a notice of appeal on Aug. 28 — four days before they were ordered to leave. The appeal claimed a number of errors made by the chambers judge, including that there was an abuse of power during the second petition and in determining the end date of the lease.
On Sept. 21, 2013, Illingworth and Evergreen’s director, Shaw Galbraith, signed a lease that Illingworth had prepared using a template from a different business context. Neither of the parties had a lawyer review the document before they signed it.
The lease contained a mistake. The lease states the duration of the lease would be a period of five years commencing on Jan. 1, 2014 and ending on Dec. 31, 2019. But, that’s actually six years, not five.
DeWitt-Van Oosten stated that the initial judge did not err in determining the end date of the lease and stated that there was “a rational basis” for the judge to conclude the reference to 2019 in the lease were errors. DeWitt-Van Oosten dismissed Evergreen’s three other reasons for the appeal and ordered the company to vacate the property no later than the end of January.