Amendments to the Canadian Bail Hearing: Bill C-75 and COVID-19

with the collaboration of Jeremy van Doorn, counsel Passed in June 2019 and implemented gradually ever since, Bill C-75 amended the Criminal Code in a way that impacts the state of the Canadian bail hearing.[1] Bail hearings require delicacy; judges must draw the balance between protecting the rights of the accused, while ensuring the safety of the public, the accused’s presence at trial and the confidence in the administration of justice. Release is the default, unconditionally or otherwise, unless the prosecution can demonstrate the necessity of pre-trial detention on one of the three grounds. In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, these interests become more difficult to weigh when public and individual health are considered. This article discusses the correspondence between the bail hearing jurisprudence and Bill C-75’s amendments in the context of COVID-19. Judicial History The state of the bail hearing in Canada is grounded in a trilogy of… Lire la suite