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Criminal Law: Notable Cases

R v. M (CA), [1996] 1 SCR 500
The unanimous reasons given by the Lamer Court have provided trial judges in Canada with a strong set of principles and guidelines to be followed when sentencing criminal offenders. Notably, R v. M (CA) remains one of the most cited decisions in recent SCC history.

R v. Oakes, [1986] 1 SCR 103
The accused, Oakes, made a Charter challenge after being caught with 8 vials of hashish oil. The challenge claimed that the reverse onus created by the presumption of possession for purposes of trafficking violated the presumption of innocence guaranteed under s.11 (d) of the Charter.

R v. Feeney, [1997] 2 SCR 13
A leading Supreme Court decision that deals with Charter rights as it relates to unreasonable search and seizure. The Court held that the police are not permitted to enter into someone’s house without a search.

R v. Morgantaler, [1988] 1 SCR 30
The Supreme Court of Canada rules that the abortion provision in the Criminal Code was unconstitutional, as it violated a woman’s right under s. 7 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, as it pertains to the security of person. Since this ruling, there have been no criminal laws regulating abortion in Canada.

R v. Grant, 2009 SCC 32
A decision that created a number of factors to consider when determining whether a person has been detained in compliance with section 9 and 10 of the Charter. The Grant decision also created a new test for determining whether evidence obtained by a Charter breach should be excluded, thereby replacing the Collins test.

R v. Stinchcombe, [1991] 3 SCR 326
A leading Supreme Court decision dealing with the disclosure of evidence in a trial. The Court found that the Crown had a duty to provide the defence with all evidence that could possibly be relevant to the case, regardless of whether the Crown plans to call that evidence at trial or not.

R v. Keegstra, [1990] 3 SCR 697
The Supreme Court upheld the Criminal Code provision prohibiting the willful promotion of hatred against an identifiable group. James Keegstra had been charged after teaching holocaust denial to his public school class.

R v. Zundel, [1992] 2 SCR 731
The Supreme Court struck down a provision in the Criminal Code that prohibited the publication of false information or news on the basis that it violated the Freedom of Expression provisions of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Liaison Librarian

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Matthew Renaud
E.K. Williams Law Library
(204) 474-6371
Subjects: Law