Bench Press 39-5: Private Use Doesn’t Apply

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Two Edmonton men were acquitted of offences of making and possessing child pornography because the trial judge accepted that the material, involving two runaway teenage girls, was made for the men’s private use. The Supreme Court of Canada ordered new trials for the men, ruling that s. 153 of the Criminal Code, which makes sexual […]

Bench Press 39-5: Duress as a Defence to Murder

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For the first time in Canada, an appeal court has upheld the use of duress as a defence to a charge of murder even though the Criminal Code explicitly rules it out.  The Ontario Court of Appeal outlined the factors necessary to support both a statutory and common law defence of duress, for people who […]

Bench Press 39-5: Red-faced about the Red Chamber?

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Aniz Alani, a Vancouver lawyer, has launched a legal action to force Prime Minister Harper to appoint new senators to fill the vacancies in the Red Chamber. The lawyer considers illegal Mr. Harper’s position that he will not advise the Governor General to fill existing vacancies in the Senate. The federal government opposed the application, […]

Bench Press 39-5: A Jury of Your Peers?

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An Ontario Aboriginal man has had his conviction for manslaughter re-instated by the Supreme Court of Canada.  Clifford Kokopenace was originally convicted in 2008.  However, the Ontario Court of Appeal overturned his conviction because the jury at his trial did not have any Aboriginal members. It ruled that this omission violated his Charter guarantee to […]

New Employment Law Resources for Alberta Youth

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Many new Canadians are unfamiliar with the legislation that protects them in the workplace. Research indicates that immigrants with limited English speaking abilities often turn to their children to act as intermediaries to pass on information, including legal information. By developing resources for youth, the youth will learn about human rights law and then will […]

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