Saturday, October 13, 2007

CanWest News Service Regarding Kevin J. Layes

Former Royal Bank CEO ordered to appear in lawsuit
CHARLES MANDEL CanWest News Service

The former CEO of the Royal Bank of Canada will appear in Halifax court in October to testify in a lawsuit. A judgment in Nova Scotia Supreme Court last week orders John Cleghorn to act as a witness in a lawsuit a Nova Scotia spring water entrepreneur has been waging since 1996 over a business deal gone sour.

The judgment compelling Cleghorn - the current chairman of Canadian Pacific Railway Limited and an officer of the Order of Canada - to testify is a small victory of sorts for Annapolis Valley businessman, Kevin Layes, who is now representing himself after having gone through three lawyers.

Layes is fighting at least four lawsuits all related to the company he founded in 1994, Sugarloaf Spring Rain Limited.In a pre-trial brief, Layes contends that Cleghorn was present via speaker-phone from Toronto when a $500,000 mortgage and a $190,000 loan for Sugarloaf was approved. Layes alleges that he ultimately became responsible for that money after he was removed from control of his company.

Judge Walter Goodfellow noted that Layes tried once before unsuccessfully to have Cleghorn subpoenaed in 2006, but that the previous judge turned down the request, pointing out a local Royal Bank account manager had more direct knowledge of the case. But Goodfellow said he is persuaded that witnesses are necessary to help resolve the suit. Neither Layes nor Cleghorn could not be reached for comment.

In his amended statement of claim - filed in 2006, 10 years after his first statement of claim - Layes alleges that three Halifax lawyers were in a conflict of interest when they provided him with legal advice during a rancour-filled investment in and subsequent takeover of the firm. He also alleges two of the lawyers were negligent in not removing themselves from the transaction. Layes is seeking general damages, special damages, prejudgment interest, punitive damages and costs from Joseph MacDonald, Peter Bryson and Marcia Brennan.In their statement of defence, the lawyers deny any negligence or misconduct and the trio dispute that they caused Layes any loss in any way. Bruce Outhouse, the defendants' lawyer in Halifax, said he would reserve what he had to say for the upcoming trial in October. "Our view of the allegations is contained in the defence."

In the pre-trial brief, Layes states that within a four-week period he was "completely usurped" of his ownership in the company he began. "I have single-handedly fought this lawsuit for 10 long years, facing every possible hurdle along the way. "I have sacrificed my entire life to have what is mine returned. I have sold my house, my cars, my properties, even my personal belongings. In 2000, I separated and then my wife and I divorced because of my dogged determination to bring MacDonald, Bryson and Brennan to court."None of the allegations from Layes have been proven in court.

Layes' brief outlines how Sugarloaf made a name for itself in August 1994 when coliform bacteria was found in Dartmouth's water supply. A competitor ran into production problems, enabling Sugarloaf to become the main supplier of water to the city during the crisis.Hospitals, hotels and even Tim Hortons used the water. But from that successful beginning, Layes and the company ran into a tangle of troubles, according to the brief.

Layes details how over the next couple of years he became involved with a number of individuals interested in buying into the firm. But once the investors gained control of the company, things fell apart, Layes alleges.According to the brief, Layes alleges that the investors replaced him as company president, that they contacted employees and customers and instructed them to route information to them, and that he was locked out of the business. During that time, Layes was also informed he was solely accountable for the money RBC had approved. Ultimately, Layes underwent bank foreclosure.

The trial begins in early October and is scheduled to last approximately five weeks.


Anonymous said...

Just read the supreme court decision (google kevin layes) interesting reading but all hes done so far is get a sopeana , he's taking on several lawyers AND representing himself, now I ask you which of thoses dudes has a mental problem

Anonymous said...

good lord, is this real, how do you get away with this sort of thing, how would you even dare to try and the girlfriend is in on it ,my my , whats this world coming to

Anonymous said...

Get your facts straight people. Stop dreaming up all sorts of conspiracy theories.
You are all crazy and should stay out of people's businesses when you don't know your facts. Joyce is about to lose everything she's ever worked for in her life! She should stay out of people's business and focus on her own screwed up life. Her failure to run her own Real Estate Agency a couple of years ago is one failure I can mention. Oh and by the way this site is run by Joyce and Timothy Gillespie.

Anonymous said...

The last poster seems to know all the facts- why not share with the rest of the readers of this blog?
I'll bet the land owners and government officials here in Nova Scotia would also like to know the facts because this thing is a black eye for tourism, real estate sales and responsible government.

Anonymous said...

You just don't have your facts straight on anything. You think you know something, when you don't. You think it's Joyce and Tim who own this website; when they don't.
This website belongs to all of us who you screwed by selling fraudulent land on EBay and your other websites.

BTW, How's court??? The scarf was very becoming over your head.. Try putting it in your mouth now...

corporate bully said...

Royal Bank of Canada,(RBC Centura): Corporate Bully