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The Freedom Convoy: What is mischief under Canadian law?

VANCOUVER – Some of the highest-ranking organizers of protests against the government and COVID-19 missions in Ottawa are facing charges including mischief and advising to carry out the action. vi naughty. What does that really mean? Here is the magnitude of the false accusations and the consequences that those accused may face:

WHAT IS THE MISCHIEF FEES?

A mischief charge under the Penal Code is extremely versatile, covering a wide range of possible crimes from tampering with computer data to crimes that endanger life or death.

Martin Peters, a criminal attorney in Vancouver, says the most common use of mischief in the context of protests involves interference with one’s right to work or access to property or tools. somebody.

WHAT TO THE MISCHIEF COMMITMENT?

Counseling involves leading or telling someone to commit misbehavior.

WHAT ARE THE CONSEQUENCES OF BEING SERIOUS?

Kicking a wall carries a fine, while mischief going to a war memorial or blocking key areas of downtown can result in up to 10 years in prison, Toronto criminal attorney Karen McArthur said.

In the most severe cases, the maximum sentence is life in prison, Peters said.

While Peters said counseling to commit mischief would carry the same consequences as the mischief itself, McArthur said the case could see prosecutors push for harsher punishments.

The consulting fee could be taken more seriously, she said, as it puts organizers like Tamara Lich and Chris Barber at the helm of “an organization with a lot of tentacles.”

HOW TO TYPICALLY FOR OR AGAIN MISCHIEF CHARGES?

According to McArthur, this is usually a four-step process. The defendant was first charged, then he asserted his right to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly. The Crown will then argue why those rights are not superior to all others and then a judge will issue a ruling.

HOW IMPORTANT THESE FEES?

The fact of being charged begins a process by which a judge can set terms that individuals are obligated to adhere to, as seen in other objections, Peters said.

He said: “The charges are negligible. The crime of robbery is a fairly low-level crime and carries fairly low sanctions. But once the police can charge them, they can arrest and put them in jail. hold”. At the bail hearing, the judge can add other provisions, such as “out of town,” Peters said.

This Canadian Press report was first published on February 20, 2022.

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