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Criminal Trials

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The Rule in Browne and Dunn – The Confrontation Rule

The rule in Browne v. Dunn, also known as the confrontation rule, is rooted in concerns about trial fairness. The rule states that where a party, in criminal cases usually the defence, is advancing a theory that contradicts the evidence of the witness being questioned...

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The Difference Between Civil and Criminal Court

For many members of the public, the legal system may seem monolithic. Popular culture doesn’t always do a good job of distinguishing between the different kinds of law. We generally understand that there are judges, lawyers, and juries - and for many, that’s as far as...

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Jurisdictional Errors and Certiorari Applications

The scope of judicial review of certiorari is very limited, only allowing review where “it is alleged that the tribunal has acted in excess of its assigned statutory jurisdiction or has acted in breach of the principles of natural justice which, by the authorities is taken to be an excess of jurisdiction”. This limited scope of review reflects the limited screening purpose of the preliminary inquiry, only allowing review for jurisdictional error, and not mistakes of fact or law.

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Probative vs Prejudicial

The Probative vs Prejudicial nature of any piece of evidence is an issue that arises in almost every criminal trial in Ontario. For a trier-of-fact (either a Judge or members of a Jury) to consider any piece of evidence it must be material and relevant or it is...

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Ontario Courts Reopening for Criminal Trials

Ontario criminal trials are back in session. The Ontario Court of Justice resumed criminal case management matters as of November 30th. Due to COVID-19, cases were adjourned from March 16th to August 7th, and then again from August 24th to November 27th. All accused...

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What is Beyond a Reasonable Doubt (BRD)?

Guilty Beyond a Reasonable Doubt (BRD) is the standard for convictions in a criminal trial. A court cannot find that the defendant is guilty of a crime unless the evidence satisfies this standard of proof. But what exactly...

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Bail For Murder Charges in Toronto

Bail For Murder Charges in Toronto

In Toronto, bail is only granted in exceptional circumstances for those who have outstanding murder charges. In order to be considered for bail, you and your proposed sureties must meet certain conditions set out by the court. If you are unable to meet these conditions, you may be required to...

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Actual Cost of Sexual Assault Charges

Actual Cost of Sexual Assault Charges

Nobody wants to talk about the actual cost of sexual assault charges. Particularly when it comes to discussing the actual costs that serious sexual offences impose on the justice system. This is likely due, in part, to the fact that most people not involved in the criminal justice system don't...

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Drug Impaired Driving – The Best DRE Checklist

Drug Impaired Driving – The Best DRE Checklist

What Is a Drug Recognition Expert? A Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) is a police officer trained to scientifically identify if a person's ability to operate motor vehicle is drug impaired by or impaired by alcohol. They are scientifically trained to determine if a person is driving under the...

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