Residential school survivor reacts to allegations against Merchant Law Group

REGINA – A local Aboriginal elder spoke out for his community after learning a local law firm is being sued for allegedly committing fraud during Indian residential school litigation.

Earlier this week, the Canadian government filed a statement of claim accusing Merchant Law Group of falsely representing time spent working on that class action lawsuit.

Noel Starblanket spent 11 years in residential school. He said, “I am not surprised the government of Canada is suing law firms for improper billing.”

Between 1997 and 2005, Tony Merchant and his law firm dealt with more than 7,000 claims from survivors.

Starblanket wasn’t represented by Merchant, but the allegations against Merchant Law Group still upset him.

“There’s still a lot of hurt, anger and grief out there,” he said. “This scenario only serves to bring all of those emotions back. It’s not nice for clients, for claimants, for survivors, for all of us that endured this hardship over the years. And to know that people are making millions of dollars off their misery does not sit well with me.”

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