All posts tagged: R. v. Jordan

Delays in criminal trials cut by nearly half in Quebec

A 20-year old man from Western Quebec who was accused of assault causing bodily harm while he was a teenager is the latest to have benefitted from a stay of proceedings due to unreasonable delays.

More recently still, a week after Khalid Gakmakge was refused a stay for a 2011 murder he is accused of committing, a Sri Lankan man charged with killing his wife in Quebec five years ago has been deported after the charge against him was stayed because his constitutional right to a timely trial was delayed.

Ever since the Supreme Court of Canada’s landmark R. v. Jordan decision a year ago, approximately 1,766 motions to stay because of unreasonable delays have been filed across the country, with 204 having been granted and 333 dismissed, according to figures obtained by Canadian Press. The remainder are either before the courts, forsaken by defence, or resolved on other grounds.

While the figures may appear to be disturbing, a Dalhousie University law professor who conducted a review of stay applications in the six months following the Jordan, found that there has only been a slight increase in the number of applications filed, most of whom have taken place in Ontario.

Quebec government boosts spending in criminal justice system

Under mounting pressure to ease the huge backlog of cases in the criminal court system, the Quebec government recently announced that it will inject $175.2 million over the next four years to recruit new judges, prosecutors and support staff and add new courtrooms to help curb court delays.

The new monies, investments that the Quebec legal community have been clamouring for years, come on the heels of revelations that approximately 288 criminal cases may be dropped following the precedent-setting ruling by the Supreme Court of Canada last July in R. v. Jordan.