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The Guilty Client

When I attend a dinner party, it is inevitable that someone will hear that I am a criminal lawyer and feel compelled to advise me that they’ve always wanted to be one, too, since first seeing television lawyer dramas like Law and Order or CSI. This is usually followed by the naïve question: “Have you ever acted for a guilty client?” The answer is yes. A thousand times yes. Every criminal lawyer acts for guilty clients or they wouldn’t have much legal work. Whether they are charged with domestic assault, theft, sexual assault or impaired driving, many of our clients are actually at fault. They actually did what they are alleged to have done! When a client comes into my office, the real issue is not whether or not they committed an offence, but rather, can the prosecution prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt. The “Smoking Gun” The term…

4 Mar 2015

Sexual Assault: Mistaken Belief in Consent

9 Feb 2015

Sexual assault is a criminal offence under s. 271 of the Criminal Code. Sexual assault is defined as any form of sexual contact without the consent of both parties. This…

Is It A Crime To Record a Conversation?

9 Dec 2014

It is not a crime and legal in Canada to record a conversation as long as at least one party consents to the recording. It is legal to record a…

Can A Domestic Assault Charge Be Dropped?

11 Nov 2014

Yes, it is possible to have domestic assault charges dropped. However, the complainant or victim are not in control of this process. The power to withdraw criminal charges is held…

Is it a Crime not to Report a Crime?

19 Aug 2014

It is not a criminal offence in Canada not to report a crime. The Criminal Code of Canada does not contain the offence of not reporting a crime. Even if…

Is It A Crime To Practice Witchcraft?

5 Aug 2014

It is a crime to practice witchcraft in Canada with the intent to deceive another by pretending to exercise or to use any kind of witchcraft, sorcery, enchantment or conjuration.…

What Is A Reasonable Prospect of Conviction?

16 Jul 2014

In the case of Proulx v. Québec [2001], the Supreme Court of Canada discussed the concept of a reasonable prospect of conviction and said the following: “To say that a…