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Vancouver Criminal Law Blog

Kyla Lee’s column in Vancouver Is Awesome: Police discipline in impaired driving cases must be fair

Recently, reports came out about a New Westminster police officer who was issued an Immediate Roadside Prohibition — an administrative penalty under British Columbia’s Motor Vehicle Act — for drinking and driving. Although the officer was off duty at the time she received the prohibition, an investigation was launched under the Police Act, the legislation that governs discipline of police officers in British Columbia. Ultimately, the officer was found guilty of “discreditable conduct.” Where this case gets very interesting is in how the police officer was penalized. The recommendation from the New Westminster Chief Constable was that she be issued a written reprimand and...

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Kyla Lee on the Lynda Steele Show: The provincial government is cracking down on “bad drivers” with inflated insurance rates

On (May 17th) the BC NDP government, announced that following feedback from nearly 35,000 British Columbians, the Government of British Columbia is cracking down on bad drivers. Attorney General David Eby says the responses indicate most British Columbians favour changes that will make insurance more affordable for low-risk drivers and see high-risk drivers pay increased insurance premiums to better reflect the risks they represent.  Here to talk about these changes and what they might mean for you is lawyer Kyla Lee. ...

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Paul Doroshenko on Global News: Government proposed huge ICBC increases for bad drivers

Prepare to pay more for your ICBC basic insurance if you’re a “risky driver.” Attorney General David Eby has released the findings of a public consultation in which nearly 35,000 British Columbians weighed in on how the province can make insurance rates more fair. A vast majority of British Columbians, 82.3 per cent, believe that risky drivers should pay more. The provincial government is now going to consider the feedback and set new rates in June. The target is to have the new rates implemented by April 1, 2019. “We were asking British Columbians how we should ensure that people that are higher risk...

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Warrantless Arrests: Cases That Should Have Gone to the Supreme Court of Canada, But Didn’t!

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Welcome to Cases That Should Have Gone to the Supreme Court of Canada, But Didn’t! This week, lawyer Kyla Lee discusses the scope of search in warrantless arrests. Acumen Law Corporation lawyer Kyla Lee gives her take on a made-in-Canada court case each week, and discusses why these cases should have been heard by Canada’s highest court: the Supreme Court of Canada. In Canada, the law is that if a police officer arrests a person, they are entitled to search that person and the surrounding areas to obtain evidence related to the arrest. However, in Damion Pearson's case, he was stopped for impaired...

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Sarah Leamon in The Huffington Post

Unless you've experienced the criminal justice system firsthand, "victim fine surcharge" probably doesn't mean very much to you. But it has been at the centre of an ongoing legal controversy for a number of years now. The mandatory victim fine surcharge was first brought into effect by the Stephen Harper government in 2013. It amounts to 30 per cent of any monetary fine that is ordered to be paid by the court. If no fine is ordered, a fine of $100 is payable for a summary-offence conviction, and $200 for being convicted of an indictable crime. This means that where an offence carries a mandatory $1,000...

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Sarah Leamon in CBC News: THC and DUIs

Perfect 'weed breathalyzer' may never come. When it comes to drivers impaired by marijuana, there are still a lot of unanswered questions in B.C. — even with legalization still expected to take place this summer. The tools, training and method of determining whether a driver is impaired by marijuana are still not certain. Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth said last week the province is still waiting for information from the federal government on those details, including what devices will be used as breathalyser equivalents during roadside stops. ...

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Marijuana Arrests: Cases That Should Have Gone to the Supreme Court of Canada, But Didn’t!

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Welcome to Cases That Should Have Gone to the Supreme Court of Canada, But Didn’t! This week, lawyer Kyla Lee discusses marijuana arrests. Acumen Law Corporation lawyer Kyla Lee gives her take on a made-in-Canada court case each week and discusses why these cases should have been heard by Canada’s highest court: the Supreme Court of Canada. After being pulled over for speeding, Mr. Lotfy was arrested for the possession of a controlled substance after Constable Innes detected an odour of marijuana and conducted a search of the vehicle. During trial, Mr. Lotfy argued that the officer violated his rights by arresting him...

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Kyla Lee on News 1130: ‘Disturbing’ changes to BC’s impaired driving provisions

While preparing for the federal legalization of marijuana, the provincial government has modified the Motor Vehicle Act to deal with drug-impaired driving. But one lawyer says Victoria is also quietly slipping in changes to the way drinking and driving is dealt with and they take away some of your rights. Vancouver lawyer Kyla Lee is concerned about tweaks to the administrative driving prohibition (ADP) which can be handed out when an officer has “reasonable and probable grounds” to believe that a driver’s blood alcohol concentration exceeded the legal limit within three hours of driving, or that the person refused to provide a blood...

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Sarah Leamon on Roundhouse Radio: New Pot Plan in BC

Sarah Leamon on Roundhouse Radio

Sarah Leamon, criminal defence lawyer at Acumen Law Corporation and chair of the PACE Society board, joins Gene Valatis to talk about the new pot plan in BC, what will happen for those crossing the border and driving while impaired. Ms. Leamon said there were two devices authorities are planning to use to measure roadside impairment but both neither are reliable. "All it can tell you," she said. "Is how much THC is in your oral fluid. That actually doesn't have any discernable ratio to the amount of THC that is in the bloodstream, nor does it have any kind of correlation whatsoever...

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