Long gun registry injunction extended in Quebec
Province's legal challenge of federal law to destroy gun registry data to start in June
A judge has extended the short-term injunction blocking the federal government from dismantling the long gun registry.
The court order remains in effect until next week when a ruling on a medium-term injunction is expected.
Quebec's legal challenge of the federal law to destroy data in the gun registry is scheduled to start in June.
But federal government lawyers opposed the interim order to keep the registry going until a ruling is made in the case.
Justice Marc-André Blanchard of Quebec’s Superior Court accepted the province's argument that it would suffer irreparable harm without an order from the court.
In his ruling, the judge described the situation he is facing as unique in Canadian law where two levels of government on opposite sides of the registry are both claiming to be acting in the public interest.
Ottawa wants to move forward with dismantling the gun registry and deleting information contained in it.
The Quebec government sought an injunction in a Montreal court last week, in anticipation of royal assent for C-19, the Harper government's legislation to fulfil a longtime campaign promise to scrap the registry.
Quebec says it is entitled to that data as it moves forward in creating its own registry.
The court granted Quebec a temporary injunction last week that prevented Ottawa from destroying any of the data.
The ruling means Quebecers are still obliged to register their weapons, and that the registry data for the province will be preserved and maintained.
Blanchard said the registry needs to be protected and remain in force at least until next week when he will issue another ruling on whether the injunction is extended until the June trial starts.