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February: Recent SCC Decisions

Criminal Law: Right to Counsel R. v. Dussault, 2020 QCCA 746 (39330) The Respondent, Patrick Dussault, was arrested for murder and arson. Before his trial, he moved to exclude from the evidence an incriminating statement he had made to the police while being questioned; the reason he gave was the statement had been obtained as the …

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January: Recent SCC Decisions

Recent Supreme Court of Canada and Appeals Courts decision synopses graciously authored and provided by Professor Eugene Meehan and Supreme Advocacy LLP. The full website is accessible at https://supremeadvocacy.ca/.  Criminal Law: Aiding & Abetting Cowan v. R., 2020 SKCA 77 (39301) Following a trial before a judge sitting alone, Mr. Cowan (appellant on the appeal as of right/Respondent on the …

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Indigenous People and R. v. Gladue

Criminal law remains a vitally important part of Canada’s legal system. Criminal defence lawyers work tirelessly to ensure that civil liberties are upheld, and just sentences are provided. This work can be extremely complicated, but Laurier University is trying to highlight the issue of Indigenous people being overrepresented in the criminal justice system. R. …

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Criminally Responsible Or Not Criminally Responsible?

Mental illness can be used as a defence during criminal cases, drastically affecting an individual’s sentencing and potentially result in a not criminally responsible verdict. When the mental illness defence is used too freely, though, where should the line be drawn? Crafting an appropriate sentence for an individual charged with a crime remains an …

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Privacy in Criminal Law

Privacy and solicitor client privileges have and will always be an important aspect of the legal profession. There are concerns that contact tracing could be used for more than combatting COVID-19 if the information makes its way to the wrong organizations. In the United States, contact tracing has already been used to identify protesters. …

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Organized Crime

A recent investigation has led to the arrest of 11 people and the seizure of around $300,000.00 worth of Canadian currency related to the drug market. The continued sale and use of illicit drugs continues to be a pressing issue for Canada. Organized criminal organizations are continuing to find ways of bringing drugs into …

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Body Cameras and Law Enforcement

In 2020, the push for police accountability has led to the introduction of body cameras for use on law enforcement. This would offer video footage that could either confirm or disprove any accusations of misconduct. It would also improve transparency between law enforcement officers and the people they protect. However, there have been a …

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Face Coverings

Safety precautions against COVID-19 continues to be an important part of everyday life for people around the globe, including those held in custody. Some criminal lawyers have noticed that their clients are not being given masks when leaving the detention facility despite the potential health concerns. This could pose an issue when the accused …

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Intelligence Agencies

For more serious crimes, there is a delicate balance that must be found between providing a fair trial to the accused and protecting Canada’s secret intelligence operations. Divulging too much information could put these intelligence operations at risk by allowing other criminal organizations to have a better idea of how Canada’s intelligence efforts operate. …

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Illegal Cannabis Operations In Canada

In October 2018, the Canadian Cannabis Act came into effect, legalizing the substance on a federal scale. The Act established a strict framework in which cannabis would be controlled across Canada. This includes rules for the sale, possession, production, and distribution of all marijuana products. Why Was The Cannabis Act Established? The legalization of …

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