News: From the Docket

Coke charges fail as no proof of control

A man is seated in the front passenger seat of a car. A clear plastic bag containing 6.2 grams of crack cocaine rests in plain view on the centre console between him and the driver.

Is that enough evidence to find the passenger guilty of possession of cocaine?

That’s the question a...Read More

Marijuana Case Highlights Charter Rights Test

Routine traffic stop A man exits a bar and drives away. Police pull him over for a sobriety check.

There’s no odor of alcohol and the driver says he had nothing to drink.

Police check his driver’s licence and vehicle documentation. All in order.

Odor of unburnt marijuana

While standing at the...Read More

Cursing the cops was not a crime

A man convicted of “cause public disturbance” for yelling obscenities at police has been acquitted on appeal. In a recent ruling, the Ontario Court of Appeal reaffirmed that merely mouthing off at police is not an offence.

The appeal was filed by Mr. Kukemueller who showered police with expletives when they entered onto his property...Read More

C-phones and arrest

Cell-phone searches and arrest

If you’ve just been arrested, can police search your cell phone?

The Supreme Court recently considered this issue and answered the question with a qualified “yes.”

The court considered the case of Kevin Fearon, who had been arrested following an armed robbery by two men in July 2009. The...Read More

News: Commentary

Crown should toss beer-can mischief charge

The criminal law is a blunt instrument. It should be used with restraint.

This is a principle that should impel the Crown Attorney to drop the case against Ken Pagan who appears in Toronto’s Old City Hall court on November 24 on a charge of mischief for allegedly hurling a...Read More

Decriminalizing drug possession for personal use

Canada’s decision to legalize marijuana in 2017 marks a stark break from the country’s zero-tolerance drug policy and has prompted discussion about further liberalization. To minimize drug-related deaths, disease and crime, possession of small amounts of all drugs should be treated as a public-health issue, not a criminal one.

Drugs and...Read More

News: From the Legislature

New Laws on Impaired, Other Driving Crimes

Canada’s criminal laws on impaired driving and other driving offences have been dramatically revamped. The changes took effect on December 18, 2018.

Here are some highlights:

  • Police can demand you to provide bodily samples at the roadside to test for drugs
  • Police can demand you to provide a breath sample at the roadside apparently...Read More

Bill protects citizenship of terrorists, traitors and spies

Persons convicted of terrorism, treason or espionage will no longer lose their citizenship under proposed changes to the Citizenship Act. The changes are part of a Liberal government bill, now at first reading in the Senate, that will reverse legislation passed in 2014 by Stephen Harper’s Conservatives.

Jail pending trial...Read More

Substantive Law

Drive Disqualified vs. Drive Under Suspension

Drive Disqualified vs. Drive Under Suspension

Driving While Disqualified (“drive disqualified”) and Driving While Under Suspension (“drive suspended”) are closely related. Drive disqualified is more serious as it’s a criminal charge while drive suspended is a provincial offence (under the Highway Traffic Act in Ontario and similar legislation in READ MORE

Dangerous Driving vs. Careless Driving

Dangerous Driving vs. Careless Driving

Dangerous Driving The Criminal Code offence of dangerous driving is made out where viewed objectively, your driving is dangerous to the public, having regard to all the circumstances, including the nature, condition and use of the place where the driving occurs and the READ MORE



Definition Application of force An assault is the intentional application of force, directly or indirectly, to another person without that person’s consent. Threat to apply force An assault may also take the form of an attempt or threat, by an act or gesture, READ MORE

Uttering Threats

Uttering Threats

Threaten death or bodily harm Under the Criminal Code, it is an offence to knowingly utter or convey a threat to cause death or bodily harm to any person. It is also an offence to threaten to burn, destroy or damage property or READ MORE

Liquor Licence Act

Liquor Licence Act

Huge fines Fines of up to $500,000 can be levied against a corporation for breach of the following offences: sale or supply of liquor to a person who is, or appears to be, under the age of 19 knowingly allowing a person who READ MORE

Criminal Procedure

Pardons and Record Suspensions

WE CAN HELP GET YOU A PARDON If you have a criminal record, contact us now for help with a pardon (record suspension). What’s the point of a pardon? Keep reading… WHAT DOES A PARDON OR RECORD SUSPENSION DO? A pardon, now known READ MORE

Criminal Appeals: A Primer

Criminal Appeals: A Primer

Don’t like the verdict? Try an appeal Any criminal lawyer will tell you it’s easier to win a trial than an appeal. But if you’re not ready to face the music after the court has found you guilty and passed sentence, your only READ MORE

Diversion: Shoplifting and Mischief

Diversion: Shoplifting and Mischief

Avoid conviction without a trial If you’ve been caught shoplifting, you may be able to avoid a criminal conviction without even going to trial. In many Ontario cities including Toronto, as well as in other provinces, people charged for the first time may READ MORE

Bail and release from custody

Bail and release from custody

What is a bail hearing? If police do not release the person who has been arrested, they must bring him before a justice for a bail hearing within 24 hours or as soon as possible. A bail hearing is a procedure where a READ MORE