NB seeks leave to appeal ruling on cross border beer imports

Legislation prohibits New Brunswickers from having more than 12 pints of beer not purchased through NB Liquor.

October 13, 2016   by CP STAFF

FREDERICTON — New Brunswick’s cross-border beer battle returns to court Oct. 13.
Provincial government lawyers are seeking leave to appeal the April ruling that effectively threw out limits on cross-border alcohol imports.

Judge Ronald LeBlanc tossed out all charges against Gerard Comeau, who was charged with illegally importing 14 cases of beer and three bottles of liquor from a Quebec border town in 2012.

Beer near the border in Quebec is about half the price charged in New Brunswick, but the Liquor Control Act prohibits anyone in New Brunswick from having more than 12 pints of beer that wasn’t purchased through a liquor store in the province.

The judge cited the words of Canada’s founders, saying they never intended that laws should blatantly block the free flow of goods within the new country.

But in its notice of appeal, the Crown says the judge erred in his legal interpretation of both the Constitution Act and the Liquor Control Act.

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