One Distinct Difference In The Criminal Law Of Canada

One Distinct Difference In The Criminal Law Of Canada

29 June 2019
 Categories: Law, Blog

If you need a criminal lawyer in Canada, you should know that there are many differences between the way that the court system in the U.S. and the "Crown" executes fair and impartial judgement upon you. For one, there is no death penalty in Canada, but the equivalent punishment for an equally heinous crime is not much better. There is also the issue of proving both mens rea and actus reus. In Canada, the Crown (which is the Canadian equivalent to a District Attorney and judge/judicial location) has to prove that you had both the intention to commit the crime or crimes with which you are charged, and that you were actually the one that committed said crime(s). Here is how these may play out in court. 

Intent Proven, but Not Act 

Maybe you texted someone, you posted on social media, or you wrote an email stating that you were thinking about killing so-and-so. What caused you to think and feel this way and then put it down in print for one or more people to see can actually be used against you to prove your intent to commit a crime. However, words must meet with action. If the Crown proves that there were intent and motivation but cannot link you to the crime or prove that you really did the crime, they cannot convict. You may or may not get off with a proverbial slap on the wrist, depending on how your defence lawyer spins it. 

Act Proven, but Not Intent

When there seems to be a lot of proof that suggests that you committed the crime, or there is some unmistakable evidence that you did the crime (e.g., a video, a picture, etc.), the Crown still has to prove that you intended, plotted, schemed, or planned to do it. If it was accidental, or if something truly out of the ordinary occurred, such as temporary insanity, your lawyer has to show that and prove that you had no intentions of committing any crime at all. If you are convicted of the crime, you may not serve a full sentence because motivation and intent are lacking, or you were not in your right mind at the time. This does not include crimes committed under the influence of drugs and alcohol, however, unless the drugs in question were prescription medications with strange side effects. 

Completely Proven vs. Completely Disproven

If the Crown completely proves that you did the crime, you will do the time as deemed applicable under Canadian law. If your criminal defence attorney can completely disprove your case, you are acquitted and free to walk. All of the possible outcomes of your case are represented above.