Factum of Attorney-General

Factum of Attorney-General


Title Proper F0 GR0419 BOX 545 FILE 001B
Date(s) 1946
General material designation
This file contains a textual record.
Scope and content
This file contains a factum for the Attorney-General regarding the validity of Orders-in-Council, 7355, 7356, and 7357, which authorizes the Canadian government to deport people to Japan. The Supreme Court investigates whether this legislation is ultra vires or if the War Measures Act makes them valid. The argument in the factum contains details of precedent court cases. The argument also states that “it is clearly within the sovereign power of a state to deport or exile or banish aliens or subjects or citizens of the state and deprive them of citizenship or nationality acquired by naturalization under the laws of the state.” In a brief for Gordon Wismer, the “three classes of persons [who] are liable for deportation” is delineated: 1. Nationals of Japan over sixteen-years old; 2. Persons who have requested “repatriation” with sub groups [(a) Japanese nationals who requested repatriation; (b) Naturalized British subjects who also made request and did not revoke it; (c) Natural-born British subjects who have not revoked requests for deportation made by “the Minister.”]; 3. “Wives and children of any of the above.” This file also contains handwritten notes presumably by R.L. Maitland. One note of interest: “no definition of a person of the Japanese race.”
Name of creator
Immediate source of acquisition
The digital copies of the records were acquired by the Landscapes of Injustice Research Collective between 2014 and 2018.
This record was digitized selectively.



Factum of Attorney-General
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Readers of these historical materials will encounter derogatory references to Japanese Canadians and euphemisms used to obscure the intent and impacts of the internment and dispossession. While these are important realities of the history, the Landscapes of Injustice Research Collective urges users to carefully consider their own terminological choices in writing and speaking about this topic today as we confront past injustice. See our statement on terminology, and related sources here.