Supreme Court of Canada Clarifies Use of Prior Sexual Activity and Re-defines Consent in Honest but Mistaken Belief in Consent Defences in Sexual Assault Cases Month: June 2019

Month: June 2019

Supreme Court of Canada Clarifies Use of Prior Sexual Activity and Re-defines Consent in Honest but Mistaken Belief in Consent Defences in Sexual Assault Cases

Joseph A. Neuberger, LL.B., LL.M., C.S. Neuberger & Partners LLP In a recent precedent setting case out of Alberta, the Supreme Court of Canada overturned Bradley Barton’s manslaughter acquittal and ordered a new trial due to the Crown’s failure to be alert to the issue of the victim’s privacy regarding her sexual history. Mr. Barton was on trial for first degree murder in the death of an Indigenous woman and sex worker, who was found dead in the bathroom of the accused hotel room. The cause of death was determined to be an 11cm wound in the vaginal wall.…

New (and Arguably Absurd) Drinking and Driving Offences

By Christopher K. Assié & Joseph Neuberger Neuberger & Partners LLP The new amendments to the Criminal Code have changed the drinking and driving landscape significantly. Two changes are attracting particular attention due to their impacts on protected Charter rights and a serious potential for wrongful convictions. Arguably the most concerning amendment is the creation of a new offence – consuming too much alcohol or drugs after driving. Under s. 320.14(a) and (b), anyone with a blood alcohol concentration or blood drug concentration above the prescribed limits two hours after they have ceased driving is guilty of an offence. The…

What You Need to Know About Impaired Driving Charges in 2019

Recent changes to the impaired driving laws by the Federal Government developed to combat drinking and driving offences and the impact of legalizing cannabis, the laws surrounding impaired driving in Canada changed on Tuesday, December 18, 2018. These changes come as part of Bill C-46 which was enacted to ensure deterrence from impaired driving by making the penalties some of the most severe in the world. What Hasn't Changed The amount of alcohol allowed in your system, or the blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) has not changed for drivers. For fully licensed “G” class drivers over the age of 21, that is…

University Tribunals are no Substitute for Courts

The growing concern to address sexual assault allegations on university campuses has resulted in a new vigilance to investigate and litigate allegations against students and faculty with little to no protection of the accused person’s fundamental rights.  Increasingly students and faculty members accused of sexual misconduct, even absent criminal charges, are being forced to participate in pseudo-trials designed by universities. The accusations being made through these tribunals are often very serious in nature and the universities cannot guarantee that the complainant will not proceed with criminal charges. Most people who are accused think that they can engage in a rational…


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