Lady Justice, at B.C. Supreme Court in New Westminster. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)

Court battle over fence in Surrey costs defendant nearly $27K

Two women fight over a fence separating their properties in Panorama Village

A B.C. Supreme Court judge sure wasn’t sitting on the fence on this one.

Justice Patrice Abrioux awarded a Surrey resident’s neighbour with $26,537.53 in damages related to a court battle between two women over a fence separating their properties in Panorama Village.

He ordered the defendant in the lawsuit, Christina Sun, to pay her neighbour Jan Heather Gibson, the plaintiff, $500 damages in trespass, $12,500 damages in nuisance, $8,537.53 in special damages for out-of-pocket expenses either incurred or to be incurred, and $5,000 in punitive damages.

The judge determined Sun, whom he found to be a “sophisticated businesswoman,” was “aggressive and confrontational” with her neighbour and that both the front fence the back fence, the latter which she had removed, “were not, in whole or it part, located on Ms. Sun’s ‘own’ property.”

The court heard Sun’s property is subject to a 24-inch “Access Easement” in favour of the Gibson property, registered in 1997.

Abrioux rendered his judgment on July 30, following a 10-day trial in B.C. Supreme Court in New Westminster.

“Punitive damages do not serve a compensatory function,” the judge noted in his reasons for judgment. “They are intended to punish and deter.”

“It is clear that much of Ms. Sun’s behaviour has been malicious and oppressive, and the evidence highlights the inappropriate and disruptive nature of Ms. Sun’s behavior,” Abrioux found.

READ ALSO: Convicted murderer loses appeal in Surrey crack shack beating case

READ ALSO: Man whose sister-in-law used broom to keep him away loses appeal of sex assault sentence

According to the court document Gibson owns a house at 14908 57th Ave. and Sun owns a house at 14902 57th Ave. The properties adjoin one another in Surrey’s Panorama Village development.

The judge noted that on Feb. 26, 2016, Sun “exercised a self-help remedy” by removing a fence that had been there for several years prior to Gibson buying the property in 2010.

Both accused each other of “trespass and nuisance” and sought damages.

Sun bought her property in 2008. The court heard she owned several rental properties and this one was rented to her former husband and their son. Gibson, a retired city clerk for the City of New Westminster, bought her property in 2010. She lived there with her husband and son.

When Gibson bought her place, there was no fence in the front yard and in the back there was a privacy fence between the two properties. The court heard she and her husband had a fence erected in the front yard in 2011. Sun told the court she became aware in October 2015 that both fences were on her property and delivered a “Notice of Trespass” to Gibson, calling for the fences to be removed or she would hire a contractor to do it and Gibson would be billed. Gibson and her husband had the front yard fence removed.

Abrioux found that Sun had the back fence unlawfully removed.

“There will also be a permanent injunction permitting the plaintiff to replace and maintain the destroyed back privacy fence,” he decided.

Just Posted

Young players skate with Kazakhstan National Team in Langley

World Junior Hockey Championships competitor conducts drills with minor players

Langley woman directs popular gospel concert

Gail Suderman’s Good Noise gospel choir’s first three shows are sold-out.

Kim’s Angels return to fill ambulance for needy in Langley

The annual charity will see donors pack an ambulance with food, clothing, and baby supplies.

Christmas cheer for 400 in Aldergrove

Shortreed Elementary School hosts breakfast with Santa

SkyTrain timeline to Langley City uncertain

Plans are firming up for a SkyTrain link, but not an arrival date.

Lawyer for Chinese exec detained by Canada says it’s ‘inconceivable’ she would flee

Meng Wanzhou was detained at the request of the U.S. during a layover at the Vancouver airport

Federal government plans examination of coerced sterilization

The Liberals have been pressed for a rapid response to recent reports on the sterilizations

Huitema, Cornelius named 2018 Canadian Youth International Players of the Year

Huitema was captain of Canada’s fourth-place team at this year’s FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup

Canada not slowing emissions from oil and gas: environmental groups

New report released at the United Nations climate talks in Poland

Liberal Party moves Trudeau fundraiser from military base

The fundraiser is scheduled for Dec. 19, with tickets costing up to $400

Pipeline protesters arrested at B.C. university

Three protesters were arrested after TRU property allegedly vandalized with red paint

Family calls for change after death of B.C. man at St. Paul’s Hospital

Hospital beds for patients with both medical and mental-health issues are ‘very limited’: coroner

Goodale to ‘examine’ transfer of Rafferty to medium-security prison

Michael Rafferty was sentenced to life in prison in 2012 in the kidnapping, sexual assault and first-degree murder of Tori Stafford

‘Abhorrent’ condition of autistic B.C. boy shows flaws in care system: report

‘Charlie’ was underweight and ‘covered in feces’ when he was removed from his mom’s care

Most Read