This week at the SCC

This week, the Supreme Court of Canada will hear five appeals including a number of wiretapping cases. In one, accused drug trafficker Andrew Wakeling is fighting extradition to the U.S. In another, wiretapping was used to charge gas stations in a price-fixing scheme.

April 22 — British Columbia — Wakeling v. Canada

Charter of Rights and Freedoms: Andrew Wakeling is wanted in the United States for drug charges. Canadian law enforcement had shared information from a wiretapping investigation with U.S. law enforcement, leading to an extradition order. The SCC will review whether provisions under the Criminal Code and the Privacy Act such information for sharing such information violated Wakeling’s Charter rights, and whether sharing such information accords with fundamental principles of justice.

Read the British Columbia Court of Appeal’s decision

Related news stories:
Andrew Wakeling, accused ecstasy trafficker, gets supreme court appeal against extradition, Huffington Post

Drug trafficking suspect takes wiretap case to Supreme Court, CBC

April 23 — Alberta — R. v. Taylor

Charter of Rights and Freedoms: Jamie Taylor drove his truck drunk into a fire hydrant, injuring three passengers. He was arrested and informed of his right to a lawyer. He was treated at a hospital, where two blood samples were taken: one for police and one for doctors. He had not yet spoken to his lawyer. At trial, the Crown did not introduce the blood sample for police, conceding that Taylor’s rights were violated. However, the trial judge saw no reason to set aside the warrant for the other blood sample. Taylor’s conviction was overturned on appeal.

Read the Alberta Court of Appeal’s decision

April 23 — Ontario — Jackson v. R.

Criminal law: Douglas Jackson was convicted of second-degree murder, the result of a fatal shooting. At trial, Jackson claimed he acted in self defence, asserting the deceased had pulled a gun on him. No other evidence supported the claim, but the appellant’s counsel attempted to bring the deceased’s prior firearms convictions into evidence. The trial judge ruled the evidence inadmissible, and Jackson’s appeal was dismissed. The SCC will review whether such evidence is admissible. A publication ban is in place.

Read the Ontario Court of Appeal’s decision

Related news story:
Crack dealer gets 15 years for murder, Hamilton Spectator

April 24 — Quebec — Imperial Oil v. Jacques and Couche-Tard v. Jacques

Legislation: During an investigation into the practices of gas stations, the Competition Bureau lawfully recorded thousands of conversations that led to charges against several dozen individuals and companies for inflating gas prices. A class action on behalf of customers was instituted against 72 defendants. Class counsel sought to have the wiretap evidence for the criminal charges filed in the civil court. The Supreme Court will review whether the interplay of numerous legislative regimes provide for such a request. A sealing order is in place.

Read the Quebec Court of Appeal’s decision

Related news story:
Canada high court to weigh cartel wiretap disclosures, Law360

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