Intoxication as a Defence

One of the first things you learn in criminal law is that the law should only punish conduct that is voluntary. In other words, something someone was trying to do. You also learn pretty early that each offence has an actus reus (the action) and mens rea (intent)...

Entrapment and drug offences

Entrapment is a widely used, but commonly misunderstood, term. The Supreme Court of Canada has recently affirmed the longstanding test for entrapment initially outlined in R. v. Mack in 1988 and given guidance on how that test applies to undercover operations...

Latest on Distracted Driving

A cell phone that can’t be used remains an “electronic device” for the purposes of a distracted driving ticket according to the Court of Appeal in R. v. Tannhauser, 2020 BCCA 155.  The Motor Vehicle Act states that “[a] person must not use an electronic device while...

COVID-19 UPDATE FROM OUR PARTNERS

The COVID-19 outbreak is presenting significant challenges for the legal system in British Columbia. Courts at all levels have adjusted operations to minimize the need for in-person appearances to help mitigate spread of the virus. While the courts remain open at...

Burden of Proof

The presumption of innocence is the golden thread running through the Canadian Criminal Justice System. It is a fundamental principle of justice. As such, it is critical in any trial in which an accused person testifies that the analysis of the evidence follows an...
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