British Columbia

Couple fined $100K for causing 2013 landslide into creek

A West Vancouver couple has been fined $100,000 by a provincial court judge for causing a landslide to run into an environmentally-sensitive creek.

Mohammadreza Morshedian and Seyedeh Janani continued work on their home after they were told to stop

A judge at the North Vancouver Provincial Court fined a West Vancouver couple $100,000 for a bylaw infraction. (Google Maps)

A West Vancouver couple has been fined $100,000 by a provincial court judge for causing a landslide into an environmentally-sensitive creek.

"It's a significant fine but it's probably appropriate for the nature of this transgression of our bylaws," said West Vancouver spokesman Jeff McDonald. 

The slide occurred in 2013 when Mohammadreza Morshedian and his wife Seyedeh Shahrbanoo Janani were working on their home in the British Properties and dumping fill in their backyard without a permit. 

"The fill was unstable and there was a lot of it on a steep slope and some of the fill fell into the creek," McDonald said. 

Most bylaw infractions occur when people are unaware of them, he said, but in this case the dumping continued after bylaw officers visited the couple and issued a stop work order. 

"What these homeowners did was a pretty flagrant violation of bylaws," said McDonald. 

He said it's rare for the district to take a bylaw infraction to this level — most are resolved through mediation. 

"We're pleased with it because it sends a really strong message that people need to respect bylaws and need to respect stop work orders when they're  issued."

With files from Deborah Goble


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.