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Title Summary Date Published
How a Judge determines whether the Complainant in a Sexual Assault Case can be believed In every sexual assault trial, Canadian Courts must evaluate the credibility and accuracy of the complainant’s evidence; and inconsistencies in the complainant’s testimony are a reason why a case may be dismissed against the accused. Aug 24, 2020
Non-Canadian Citizens face Deportation for a Criminal Conviction A person who is convicted of a serious criminal offence and is not a Canadian citizen can be ordered to be deported, regardless of how long they have lived in Canada. Understand which criteria may result in deportation and whether you have the right to appeal. Jul 01, 2020
Canada’s National Sex Offender Registry Understand the legal requirements for placing a person on Canada’s Sex Offender Registry May 06, 2020
The Law regarding Dangerous Driving A conviction for dangerous driving requires that the Crown prove that you were driving in a manner far below that of a reasonable and prudent driver. Because dangerous driving is a criminal offence with significant negative repercussions, a strong defence is vital to have the charge dismissed or reduced. Mar 31, 2020
What you should know about a Conditional Discharge Persons found guilty of a minor offence may receive a conditional discharge, which means that there is no conviction registered on their record but they must serve the conditions of their probation period. Feb 21, 2020
Why Reasonable Doubt favours the Defendant in Sexual Assault Criminal Trial The bar is high for a finding of ‘guilty’ in sexual assault cases, since the defendant is presumed innocent and the onus is on the prosecution to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. And, as many sexual assault cases rest entirely on the testimony of the complainant and defendant, in cases where a judge cannot resolve the conflicting descriptions of the incident, the Court will generally rule in favour of the defendant. Jan 22, 2020
Hefty Penalties if you refuse to Provide a Sample at a Roadside Check If you’re lawfully pulled over and refuse to provide a sample to test for alcohol or drug impairment, you’ll be charged with a criminal offence and may face a stiffer fine than if you’re convicted of impaired driving. Dec 13, 2019
Probation and Breach of Probation Understand how probation works in Canada; and how failing to comply with probation conditions without a reasonable excuse can result in revoking of probation, a criminal charge and serious penalties. Oct 31, 2019
Can a Fentanyl Dealer be charged with Manslaughter? Concerns over the high incidence of deaths caused by fentanyl substances has motivated Ontario police and prosecutors to increasingly bring criminal charges against fentanyl dealers and traffickers who allegedly caused the death of a customer. Sep 26, 2019
You can’t be convicted of a Driving Offence simply because your Actions caused an Injury The severity of injuries suffered by an accident victim is not relevant in deciding whether an at-fault driver is guilty of a criminal driving offence. Accordingly, in a recent trial, a driver was acquitted on the charge of ‘failing to yield’ after his SUV struck and seriously injured a motorcyclist because the defendant took reasonable care in the circumstances. Sep 16, 2019
Defendant who was Sleepwalking is found ‘not Criminally Responsible’ for Sexual Assault A person may be found ‘not criminally responsible’ for an offence if they suffer from a mental disorder that prevents them from understanding that they were doing something wrong when they committed the illegal act. In a recent sexual assault trial, the defendant was found not criminally responsible for sexually assaulting a woman while sleepwalking. Jul 25, 2019
You face severe Penalties if you share Pot with an Underage Friend or Family Member If you share a joint or marijuana product with someone under the legal age for cannabis possession, which is 19 in Ontario, you are committing a criminal offence punishable by a maximum 14-year jail sentence. This penalty is much more severe than penalties for providing alcohol to a minor, and many critics say it's unreasonably harsh and most often targets young people. Jul 19, 2019
Police need Reasonable Suspicion for a Roadside Drug Test Police need grounds to form a reasonable suspicion that a driver has consumed drugs before they can legally demand fluids in a roadside check. Understand the penalties for drug-impaired driving. Mar 08, 2019
Carding - Know your Rights if you’re stopped for a ‘Street Check’ Understand your rights if you’re carded and when police randomly ask you for personal information or your ID. Jan 15, 2019
Mandatory Roadside Testing will make it easier for Police to detect Drunk Drivers Effective on December 18th, Canada’s Criminal Code allows police to demand a Breathalyzer test during a roadside stop without suspicion of drinking. Other changes to drunk-driving laws will simplify the processing of drunk-driving offences. Dec 18, 2018
Can the Defence present Evidence of a Complainant’s Sexual Activity in a Sexual Assault Case? Under Canada’s Criminal Code, evidence of a complainant’s sexual activity (other than the sexual activity that is the subject matter of the case) cannot be introduced at trial, unless a judge deems the sexual activity to be relevant or significant. Oct 29, 2018
Occupant in stopped Car is found ‘not guilty’ of DUI despite registering ‘over 80’ A man discovered behind the wheel of a disabled car at the side of the highway was found 'not guilty' of drunk driving when there was reasonable doubt that he was driving the car while drunk. Sep 04, 2018
Are Police still making Arrests for Marijuana Possession? While awaiting the legalization of marijuana, many Canadians are confused about the current penalties and whether they will be arrested and charged for possession before pot is decriminalized. Jul 13, 2018
Avoid stiff Penalties due to a Careless Driving Conviction Although Careless Driving is not a criminal offence in Ontario, a conviction may result in substantial penalties which particularly impacts people who drive for work. And, the penalties when careless driving results in injury or death may soon become more severe under newly proposed Ontario legislation. May 25, 2018
Canada’s Jury Selection Process under Review after Gerald Stanley Murder Trial Public outcry after a jury found a Saskatchewan man ‘not guilty’ in the fatal shooting of a 22-year old First Nation’s man has resulted in questions whether Canada’s jury selection process is fair. Feb 20, 2018
Unreasonable Delay by the Crown results in Dismissal of Crown's Application to Extend Appeal of Fraud Charges The Crown sought to extend the appeal time for a case where a man was acquitted on a fraud charge. The court dismissed the Crown’s motion, finding that the Crown delayed in providing necessary legal documents, without reasonable explanation. Jan 16, 2018
Rules for admitting Expert Opinion Evidence in Criminal Trials Defence counsel or the Crown may challenge the admissibility of expert opinion evidence brought by the opposing side, and the judge must rule on whether the evidence is admissible, based on established case law principals. Nov 22, 2017
Drug Charges reduced from Trafficking to Possession Drug charges may be reduced from trafficking to possession when the amount of drugs could conceivably be for personal use, as in a recent Ontario case involving a man found in possession of oxycodone and morphine pills during a search pursuant to his arrest. Oct 11, 2017
Can Evidence of past Police Investigations be admitted in my Trial? In a 2017 criminal case involving a second-degree murder charge, a judge found that non-conviction incidents could not be presented by the Crown as evidence against the accused. Aug 22, 2017
Judge rules Defendant was Arbitrarily Detained when interrogated in Police Cruiser On Ontario judge dismissed an ‘over 80’ charge for a driver who was stopped for speeding and then interrogated at length in the arresting officer’s cruiser. Jul 19, 2017
Appeal Court dismisses minor Marijuana Possession Charge In a 2016 appeal on possession of only 1.15 g. of marijuana, the judge found that the arresting officer breached the accused’s Charter rights and in light of the fact that the charge fell in the low end of drug charges, the judge decided that an acquittal is in the best interests of justice. Jun 26, 2017
Judge doubts the Reliability of Complainants’ Testimony in Sexual Assault Case Three complainants in an extended family brought sexual assault charges against a relation, but an Ontario judge found their testimonies were inconsistent and not reliability and accordingly, the accused was acquitted on all charges. May 16, 2017
Dangerous Driving Conviction requires a 'Marked Departure', not a Standard of Perfection In a recent criminal trial, a judge dismissed charges of Dangerous Driving and Failing to Stop at the Scene against a TTC driver who accidentally and unknowingly struck and killed a girl. Apr 20, 2017
When is a Peace Bond the best Course of Action? Persons accused of criminal charges, such as domestic assault, are often given the option of entering a peace bond in exchange for the Crown withdrawing the criminal charge. This is an advantageous decision in many cases, but sometimes a peace bond may have negative consequences for the accused Apr 05, 2017
Judge upholds Acquittal on Impaired Driving Charge for Case involving Prescription Drugs combined with Alcohol On appeal, the judge upheld the acquittal of an impaired driving charge for a man who’s ability to drive was severely impacted after he combined a small amount of wine with a prescribed drug, Lorazepam. Mar 20, 2017
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