Date of this Version
Court Review, Volume 54, Issue 4 (2018)
I n this edition’s article, I will review decisions rendered by the Supreme Court of Canada concerning criminal law matters during the period of January 1 to October 31, 2018. As will be seen, the Supreme Court considered a multitude of criminal law issues, including the obligation of the Crown to disclose evidence to the accused, the offences of influence peddling and first-degree murder, and the impact of mistake of law in imposing sentence and informer privilege. Let us start with the Court’s consideration of the law of evidence and informer privilege.
INFORMER PRIVILEGE AND SOLICITOR CLIENT COMMUNICATIONS:
In R. v. Brassington, four police officers with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police were charged with offences, including an attempt to obstruct the course of justice, relating to alleged misconduct during a police investigation.2 The Supreme Court noted that when the officers “were charged, the RCMP and the Crown told them that they were prohibited from discussing ‘the circumstances of their investigations in a manner that might reveal the identity of confidential informers to anyone, including their legal counsel.’”