The burden of proof placed upon the Crown when you are accused of a crime is heavy – the Crown must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
This is a high standard, and you need an aggressive defence lawyer to ensure that the Crown meets that standard in order to convict you of whatever offence with which you might be charged.
What Does the Crown Have to Prove, and How Can a Defence Lawyer Help Me?
Every offence has essential elements that the Crown must prove, and each of those elements must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt. Failure to prove any element of an offence to that standard of proof means that the accused must be found not guilty. Among the things that the Crown must prove in most cases is that you intentionally or knowingly commented the offence. This is critical and should be the first element of the case against you that a good defence lawyer attacks. Your lawyer, before the trial even starts, should ask the judge to review the essential elements of the case against you to ensure that the Crown even has a chance to meet its burden of proof. It is possible that a judge will find that the Crown cannot do so based on the evidence presented before trial starts.
Under Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms, every person accused of a crime is presumed to be innocent until proven guilty. Further, anyone accused of a crime must be informed of what the offence is so that the accused knows what must be proven to convict them. The trial must take place within a reasonable time, and reasonable bail must be provided.
Because the Crown must prove each element of the charged offence beyond a reasonable doubt, an aggressive defence lawyer will fight every step of the way against how any evidence was gathered, including whether a criminal stop was justified, whether any search was conducted properly, whether a search warrant was required or properly obtained, and with respect to any other step in the evidentiary chain.
Even when it comes to sentencing, should you be convicted despite your lawyer’s best efforts, an aggressive lawyer can obtain the least possible sentence through use of exhibits presented at sentencing hearings, including letters – such as character references – Pre-Sentencing Reports, the defendant’s criminal record, or other materials that could impact the court’s decision on sentencing. Based on such exhibits, the Crown and the defence can ask for differing types of sentencing, or different lengths of a sentence, be it incarceration or probation. These exhibits and the arguments that accompany them are known as submissions. These submissions can lead a judge to hand down a much lighter sentence than a less aggressive lawyer might be able to obtain. Given that, it is critical to have defence counsel who can make the arguments that most benefit you at sentencing as well as throughout trial.
If You Have Been Charged With an Offence in the Calgary area Contact the Lawyers of Bourdon Defence
If you have been charged with a criminal offence in Calgary or surrounding Alberta, you should consult a lawyer to determine what your rights are under the circumstances. You will need an aggressive criminal defence lawyer to represent you.
The lawyers of Bourdon Defence can assist you in protecting your rights under such circumstances. You can reach us at (403) 474-4143 or through our website.