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Toronto Crimes & Misdemeanours Law Blog

Trafficking laws pertain to street and prescription drugs

To face criminal drug charges one need not be accused of something illegal involving street drugs. It is possible that someone could be accused of a drug crime involving prescription drugs as well. Though under certain circumstances the possession and use of these drugs is legal, trafficking them is not.

Recently, 14 individuals from the Toronto area were charged with 120 drug charges involving oxycocet, oxycodone and fentanyl. Specifically, authorities claim those charged used personal information obtained from friends to falsify prescriptions which were sent to pharmacies via fax. Individuals were then enlisted to pick the prescription drugs at times that were prearranged.

Are domestic violence programs working in Ontario?

When most people are accused of committing a crime, they want to do anything they can to have the charges dismissed or reduced. When this is not possible, an acquittal is generally sought. Even when someone is convicted of a crime however, there may be things that individual can do to minimize the severity of the penalty.

Where domestic violence is concerned in Ontario, there is a program that some offenders could find they are ordered to take part in. Overseen by the Ministry of the Attorney General, Partner Assault Response programs are an alternative to trial for less-violent or first-time offenders. In other situations, offenders considered high risk or dangerous, who have been convicted, might end up a program such as this one as a condition of probation.

Crown may drop criminal charges prior to trial

As we have mentioned in previous posts, being charged with a crime is not the same as being convicted. There are multiple things that could happen in the process that could result in a positive outcome for an accused. In some cases it is possible that the charges could even be dropped.

A young Toronto area woman accused of criminal harassment recently learned that firsthand.

Evidence can make or break a criminal case

When it comes to criminal accusations, evidence plays an important role in both making a case as well as defending against charges. Because of this there are certain rules in regard to evidence that need to be followed by both the Crown and the accused. According to one man accused of breaching bail conditions, Crown prosecutors are in possession of evidence that illustrates his innocence.

Law enforcement arrested the man after he was accused of being near a fire that burned his former home down. While he is not accused of having anything to do with the fire, because being in the area of his former home would put him within proximity of his ex-wife, he was charged with the latter crime. The man, a decorated veteran who served in Afghanistan, claims he was at his parents’ house at the time of the fire.

Not all drunk driving consequences are criminal

Most residents of Ontario are likely aware that under some circumstances, if they are convicted of drunk driving they could end up spending time in jail. They may not be aware that there are other ways that drunk driving could impact their lives as well. Some of these consequences arise without a conviction, and possibly even without a criminal charge.

For example, it is possible that someone in Ontario whose blood alcohol content is under .08 (the legal limit) but above .05, could have their license suspended. Because this is an administrative penalty, one need not be charged with a crime for this to occur. The length of suspensions possible varies but starts at three days.

Those behind Ashley Madison hack could face criminal charges

By now most people have likely heard about the hack of the dating website for married people. The hack of Ashley Madison, the Canadian-based company, has resulted in the release of personal information of tens of millions of customers. In addition to credit card data, their names were released to the public. The release has undoubtedly caused many of the people signed up for the service to scramble to determine how they will approach the issue with their spouse and families.

Update on Toronto police body camera pilot

Last spring we wrote a post regarding a body camera pilot taking place in Toronto that is slated to continue until June 2016. In that post we outlined both the reasons people support and oppose the practice. Some believe the use of the cameras is a good way to record how law enforcement officers conduct themselves in the course of doing their job. Those opposed cite privacy issues as a reason.

Planted evidence does not provide pretext needed for search

When someone is suspected of engaging in an illegal activity, there are certain things that Toronto law enforcement officers can do to determine whether that is in fact what is going on. Under certain circumstances an officer can perform a search of a house or vehicle to get more information. To take this course of action there must be a pretext for that search. If there is not pretext, a search is not legal. In addition, police officers cannot create a pretext that does not in fact exist.

Investigation following criminal charge could lead to dismissal

Sexual assault charges should of course be taken seriously. When they are pursued by the Crown it is possible that the accused could be found guilty and face harsh penalties. Ideally, a defense will begin to be crafted during the investigation phase before charges have been leveled. This means someone facing a charge should contact a lawyer as soon as he or she believes that they are under investigation. 

Domestic violence call leads to additional criminal charges

Authorities in the Toronto area take allegations of domestic violence very seriously. Accordingly, when an individual reports an incident of this nature to law enforcement, in many cases, someone involved in the incident will be arrested. While domestic violence charges alone can be problematic to the accused individual, in some situations they can lead to additional charges. Last month two Ontario men found themselves in this situation.