Criminal Law

A lesson from Dr. Seuss for burgeoning lawyers

By Ryan Handlarski . One of my favourite books of all time is the children’s book ‘ Oh the Places You’ll Go ’ by Dr. Seuss. I read this book to my son almost every week and it has a lesson in there that I think is good advice for all lawyers. The book cautions its young readers (or listeners) as follows: Read more

Witness’s memory loss claim throws wrinkle into criminal case

A witness’s claim to a complete memory loss has raised unusual issues in a home invasion case, says Toronto criminal defence lawyer Tyler Smith , who defended one of the accused in the matter. Read more

Concerns around gunshot-detection system need to be addressed

Privacy concerns over the City of Toronto’s plan to increase surveillance and incorporate new audio technology to detect gunfire are “a little overblown,” Toronto criminal lawyer Jacob Stilman tells The Lawyer’s Daily . Read more

Law allowing consecutive periods of parole eligibility ‘ludicrous’: Hicks

A Criminal Code provision giving judges the power to sentence murderers to consecutive periods of parole ineligibility brings the justice system into disrepute by allowing "absurdly long" periods of incarceration, says Toronto criminal lawyer Christopher Hicks. Read more

Increased surveillance not the answer to gun crime: Gadhia

The City of Toronto’s plan to increase surveillance and incorporate new audio technology to detect gunfire in the wake of the Danforth shootings is not going to reduce gun violence, Toronto criminal lawyer Roots Gadhia tells The Lawyer’s Daily . Read more

Some thoughts on bail in Toronto

By John Fennel . Anyone who knows anything about bail in Toronto knows that delays are the rule. Nevertheless, Mayor John Tory recently blamed fictional speedy releases on bail for some of the recent gun violence in Toronto: “we can’t have people getting out on bail 20 minutes after they’re arrested for using a gun.” In Toronto, nobody gets out on bail in 20 minutes for jaywalking, let alone a gun crime. Nevertheless, these fictions about bail continue to exist. Read more

Sexual assault allegations and the presumption of innocence

By Joseph Neuberger . Any criminal allegation must be proven in a court of law beyond a reasonable doubt. All persons accused of an offence is innocent until proven guilty. That is the presumption of innocence. A sacrosanct principle that is crucial to any legitimate criminal justice system - the fundamental requirement of fairness. However, the mere statement of a complainant can and often does result in the laying of charges. In a trial, oral evidence of a complainant is sufficient to establish guilt beyond a reasonable doubt without any other evidence to support the allegation. Read more

CLA awards G. Arthur Martin Criminal Justice Medal to John Rosen

The Criminal Lawyers Association has awarded the prestigious G. Arthur Martin Criminal Justice Medal to John M. Rosen , noted criminal defence counsel and founder of Rosen & Company, Barristers. Read more

Solving the gun problem starts with kids: Goldlist

The answer to quelling Toronto’s gun epidemic isn’t more policing but getting the attention of children in impoverished neighbourhoods, says Toronto defence lawyer Jordana Goldlist. Read more

SCC ruling not carte blanche for courtroom mud-slinging

A Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) ruling says determining the balance between civility in a courtroom and being an exceptional advocate can be delicate, but it must be based on the merits of individual cases, says Toronto criminal lawyer Melody Izadi . Read more

More than money needed to tackle gun violence: Handlarski

Tackling Toronto’s rash of shootings will take a multi-faceted approach that delves deeper into the social aspects of gun violence beyond the strong arm of the law, says Toronto criminal defence lawyer Ryan Handlarski. Read more

Understanding stigma, bias key to defending domestic assault cases

Domestic assault cases can be among the most complex — and stigmatizing — in court partly because they are not dealt with the same way as common assault, says Oshawa criminal lawyer Lawrence Forstner. Read more

Harsh treatment in remand results in extra credit for time served

A chronic pain sufferer who sold a small amount of heroin to fund his opiate addiction was released from jail after Toronto criminal lawyer Gina Igbokwe argued he had been mistreated while in pretrial custody. Read more

Expansion of ‘rape shield’ law will lead to wrongful convictions: Neuberger

Proposed changes to Canada’s sex assault laws — that would make a complainant’s relevant sexual communications presumptively inadmissible — are a direct attack on an individual’s right to make full answer and defence, says Toronto criminal lawyer Joseph Neuberger. Read more

Justice denied to many because of strict legal aid rules: Zita

More people charged with criminal offences are defending themselves in court, mostly because they can’t afford a lawyer, but Toronto criminal lawyer Jessica Zita says proper legal representation is a must. Read more