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Panel Discussions

Crown Stay of Proceedings

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One of the systemic issues in the terms of reference under Order in Council #479/2005 involves the use of the Crown stay power, especially in the context of cases that have been the subject of a S. 696 review by the federal Minister of Justice.

The Crown stay power appears to be used in somewhat different ways across the country.  For example, in Ontario, the Crown stay tends to be used sparingly and only in cases where there is a real prospect of re-commencing the prosecution.  In Manitoba, it tends to be used more liberally, including in cases where there may be no real prospect of re-prosecuting.

The Inquiry commissioned a paper on this subject from Professor Kent Roach of the University of Toronto, Faculty of Law.  In addition, the recent Report of the Lamer Inquiry in Newfoundland contains a useful discussion of the use of the Crown stays powers in context of S.696 cases.

The paper that Professor Roach prepared can be found below along with the relevant pages from the Lamer Inquiry Report.

These documents have been circulated to all parties with standing and do the members of an expert panel who will assemble at a public session of the Inquiry on Monday, September 18, 2006.

The panelists will discuss the issue in a round table format, together with the commissioner and counsel for the inquiry and the parties.

Panel of experts:

  • Bruce MacFarlane, Q.C. (8Kb PDF)
    Professor at University of Manitoba Faculty of Law
    (Former Manitoba Deputy Attorney General)

  • Geoff Gaul (8Kb PDF)
    Director of Prosecutions for the B.C. Attorney General

  • William Marshall (8Kb PDF)
    Retired Justice of the Newfoundland Court of Appeal
    (who has undertaken a review of the stay power in Newfoundland, as a result of the Lamer Inquiry)

  • Rob Frater (11Kb PDF)
    Representing the federal Attorney General

Papers for discussion:


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2006 Commission of Inquiry Into Certain Aspects of the Trial and Conviction of James Driskell