The court case was filed by victims of the infamous brainwashing experiments conducted at Montreal’s Allan memorial institute between the 1940s and 1960s.
It involves McGill university, Montreal’s royal Victoria hospital, as well as both Canadian and US governments over allegations that these parties were involved in experimental drugs, electroshocks, and sleep deprivation techniques used to erase memories and reduce subjects to childlike states without their consent or knowledge.
Lawyers representing the United States government argued that their country should be immune from prosecution due to foreign state laws that granted absolute immunity from lawsuits back in the period when these experiments took place. Jeff Orenstein–the lawyer for the survivors and their families–claims that Canada’s 1982 state immunity act can be applied retroactively in this case since it allows for foreign states to be sued in cases involving bodily injury.
The court of appeal is expected to make its decision at a later date; however, regardless of what it decides, Orenstein stated confidently that Canadian citizens injured on Canadian soil wouldn’t necessarily need to go all the way to the United States if they wish to pursue legal action.