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PROCEDURE - Crown’s duties - Disclosure

Monday, July 26, 2021 @ 9:27 AM  

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Appeal by Dadmand from his convictions for sexual assault of five complainants. Police obtained a warrant for the appellant’s home and seized several items including computers, laptops and mobile devices. Subsequent searches of the devices revealed videos and photographs of the appellant engaged in sexual acts with several women, including some who could not be identified. Prior to trial, the appellant unsuccessfully applied for disclosure of all materials searched and seized by the police pursuant to the search warrant, including those related to complainants not named in the indictment (“uncharged complainants”). The trial judge found there was no reasonable possibility the material related to the uncharged complainants would assist the appellant in making full answer and defence. He subsequently dismissed the appellant’s challenges to the validity of the search warrant and the manner of the police search.

HELD: Appeal dismissed. The lack of disclosure related to the uncharged complainants did not impact the appellant’s ability to challenge the police search as unreasonable. The contents of the disclosure would not have assisted in determining whether the search itself was unreasonable. The appellant was able to challenge the manner of search through examination of the police officers. The disclosure sought amounted to a fishing expedition. The judge did not err in concluding there was no reasonable possibility the information sought could have assisted the appellant’s ability to make full answer and defence.

R. v. Dadmand, [2021] B.C.J. No. 1381, British Columbia Court of Appeal, G.B. Butler, J.C. Grauer, P.G. Voith JJ.A., June 25, 2021. Digest No. TLD-July262021002