Keywords: Wildlife Act – s.25; breach of natural justice; opportunity to be heard; opportunity for an oral hearing; tribunal respect finding of fact made by a court
Mr. Goodvin plead guilty in Provincial Court to 14 charges relating to two separate hunting incidents. On reviewing the file, the Deputy Director cancelled Mr. Goodvins hunting licence for a period of 5 years, and ordered him to pay fines assessed by the Court and complete C.O.R.E. exams. Mr. Goodvin appealed this decision to the Board.
The Board found that Mr. Goodvin was notified of the Deputy Directors impending decision to cancel his licence but, as Mr. Goodvin does not write, his wife prepared his submission to the Deputy Director. The Board found that the Deputy Directors failure to provide Mr. Goodvin the option of an oral hearing was a denial of natural justice. The Board held that, if Mr. Goodvin been heard by the Deputy Director, the licence suspension would not have been so long as Mr. Goodvins involvement in the two incidents was merely to assist his family members, and he had no prior convictions under the Wildlife Act. The Board directed the Deputy Director to reduce Mr. Goodvins licence suspension to two years. However, the Board upheld the decision of the Deputy Director that Mr. Goodvin must pay outstanding fines and complete the C.O.R.E. examinations. The appeal was allowed.