Wednesday: What’s Hot on CanLII

Each Wednesday we tell you which three English-language cases and which French-language case have been the most viewed* on CanLII and we give you a small sense of what the cases are about.

For this last week:

1. R. v. Luke, 2019 ONCJ 514

[54] Parliament has already allowed for exemptions to the mandatory minimum sentences in s. 255. By virtue of s. 255(5), Parliament has accepted that there will be cases where judges can, and should, exercise discretion to relieve an offender from the consequences of a mandatory minimum sentence by granting them a conditional discharge. Regrettably, according to the terms by which Parliament has crafted that exception, offenders in Ontario are not eligible for that relief. In view of s. 255(5), I am satisfied that Parliament could readily have crafted an exception which would have allowed for the exercise of judicial discretion to grant a conditional discharge having regard to the principles of sentencing set out in the Code, especially s. 718.2(e)

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

2. Brophy v. Harrison, 2019 ONSC 4377

[22] With respect to the defendant’s submissions regarding the Small Claims Court jurisdiction, in my view it was reasonable for the plaintiff to bring her action in Superior Court under the regular rules. Her case had merit and her decision to continue to trial was reasonable in the absence of any offers from the defendant. I reject the defendant’s position that the plaintiff’s award of costs should be reduced because the ultimate verdict of the jury was less than the Small Claims Court limits.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

3. R. v. Parent, 2019 ONCJ 523

[33] If the only Gladue information is provided through the prism of a Pre-Sentence Report, the Judge becomes the gatekeeper to ensure that Pre-Sentence Report is being prepared by an author with sufficient training to have the ability and insight equivalent to a trained indigenous caseworker preparing a Gladue Report. In Doxtator, the Court there was obviously satisfied with the Pre-Sentence Report content, though I am unclear as to the nature of that Pre-Sentence Report’s author’s training to become the designated officer to prepare all such reports for the Windsor office. I am left with an unanswered question which is how does a Sentencing Judge have the confidence of knowing everything relevant to sentencing without the benefit of a full Gladue Report without comparing the Pre-Sentence Report with a full Report?

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

The most-consulted French-language decision was 9147-0732 Québec inc. c. Directeur des poursuites criminelles et pénales, 2019 QCCA 373

[121] Aussi, dans le contexte de la garantie juridique accordée par l’article 12, prétendre que l’utilisation de la personne morale ne peut servir de paravent ne me convainc pas[88]. La personne morale constitue un instrument juridique mis à la disposition des citoyens qui, dans une très grande majorité des cas, l’utilisent à des fins légitimes. Elle agit toujours par l’entremise de ses dirigeants, employés ou agents.

[122] Le cadre d’analyse de la « peine cruelle et inusitée » a été élaboré à partir de situations impliquant des personnes physiques uniquement. Or, l’amende peut être cruelle pour la personne morale. Une personne morale peut souffrir d’une amende cruelle qui se manifeste par sa dureté, sa sévérité et une sorte d’hostilité[89]. L’analyse de la situation doit être entreprise en fonction de la réalité vécue par la personne morale et non en fonction d’une réalité qui ne la concerne pas.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

* As of January 2014 we measure the total amount of time spent on the pages rather than simply the number of hits; as well, a case once mentioned won’t appear again for three months.

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