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Thursday, February 25, 2016 @ 07:00 PM

The mitigating effect of bad jail time

A Correctional Services strike was narrowly averted recently in Ontario. According to nearly all of my clients, the conditions inside the jails leading up to this were particularly harsh. ... [read more]

Thursday, February 18, 2016 @ 07:00 PM

Lawmakers face profound issues in weighing law on assisted death

Division of powers, advance directives, mature minors, conscientious objection, oversight — these are just some of the thorny issues Parliamentarians are debating as they race to enact a criminal law that permits physician-assisted dying before the Supreme Court’s looming deadline. ... [read more]

Thursday, January 28, 2016 @ 07:00 PM

Judge says hold the phone when it comes to massive cell searches

An Ontario judge has reined in sweeping production orders for cellphone data, but says Parliament should decide whether and what constraints apply to police retention of the resulting personal information for use in other investigations. ... [read more]

Thursday, December 24, 2015 @ 07:00 PM

Unplugging the jury

In modern jury trials, courts and counsel must be on guard against extraneous material entering the jury room. This is becoming increasingly difficult where each prospective juror is accompanied by at least one device wirelessly connected to the Internet. ... [read more]

Thursday, November 12, 2015 @ 07:00 PM

Warrantless search upheld in drug case

The B.C. Court of Appeal has upheld a warrantless home search in a drug case, raising concerns among some legal observers that the practice is on the increase. ... [read more]

Thursday, November 05, 2015 @ 07:00 PM

Hard questions loom as trial is ended by judge

The Crown in Quebec has ordered a review of mega-trials and an internal administrative inquiry to determine why it took years for prosecutors to disclose key evidence in a timely manner, following a ruling that abruptly ended a high-profile murder and conspiracy trial of five men alleged to be Hells Angels. ... [read more]

Thursday, October 29, 2015 @ 08:00 PM

Top court warns fairness a must in roadside driving suspensions

The Supreme Court has affirmed that provinces can move their main efforts to combat impaired driving away from costly court proceedings to automatic roadside driving suspension regimes which do not engage the Charter’s s. 11 fair trial guarantees applicable to criminal charges. ... [read more]

Thursday, October 22, 2015 @ 08:00 PM

Court makes a case for web whistleblowers

Trial judges should tell jurors to blow the whistle on fellow jurors who bring extraneous research into their deliberations, according to a Court of Appeal for Ontario decision that may end up going to the Supreme Court. ... [read more]

Thursday, October 22, 2015 @ 08:00 PM

The brain, guilt and public safety

Novel forms of neuroscientific evidence, including functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), are increasingly being presented to explain offending behaviour in criminal cases in other countries. ... [read more]

Thursday, October 15, 2015 @ 08:00 PM

Mr. Big stings taking another hit in Quebec

The Quebec Court of Appeal has freed a man convicted of the first degree murder of his pregnant wife after it found police obtained his confession under duress via a “Mr. Big” sting operation, the second time this year that the province’s appeal court has taken a dim view of the elaborate police strategy. ... [read more]