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Acumen Law Corporation > News (Page 8)

Disputed traffic tickets on the rise in B.C.

Disputed Traffic Ticket

Under new system, lawyer says there will be no right of appeal As the B.C. government moves to shift traffic violations out of court, data from ICBC show the number of disputed tickets has been on the rise since 2008. Lawyers are questioning the planned shift, fearing the move will strip motorists of their constitutional rights. Under legal amendments enacted by the B.C. government, police will stop writing tickets and will electronically issue what are called “driving notices” with an online payment system. Disputing a notice involves a three-part process, according to Vancouver lawyer Kyla Lee. Initially, adjudication officers with the office of the superintendent...

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B.C. moves to eliminate court trials for traffic violations

BC Traffic tribunal under scrutiny

The B.C. government is shifting traffic violations out of court in a move lawyers fear strips motorists of constitutional rights. The Liberals are implementing amendments passed with no fanfare in 2012 to establish a new process for handling offences under the Motor Vehicle Act, similar to the paradigm shift made dealing with drunk drivers in 2010 when most impaired charges and trials were eliminated with a heavy-handed Immediate Roadside Prohibition (IRP) regime. The Ministry of Justice and Public Safety confirmed Tuesday that a two-stage rollout is planned to shift MVA violations from the criminal system. Work is underway on Phase 1, it said,...

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Vancouver police officer smashes driver’s window

VPD smash the window of a citizen

A YouTube video of a Vancouver police sergeant, who smashed a motorist's window, has raised questions about the rights drivers have when they are pulled over by police. The testy exchange caught on video shows the unidentified driver opening his window just a crack and infuriating the police officer by not stepping out of the vehicle when he was told to do so. No justification for police behaviour: Legal expert A B.C. criminal lawyer who specializes in impaired driving says the police violated the driver's rights by failing, at least in the video, to tell the driver why he was pulled over. "You can't...

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Proposed legislation will strip presumption of innocence

Presumption of Innocence

KAMLOOPS – New legislation proposed by the B.C. Liberals this week throws out the presumption of innocence and instead presumes people accused of impaired driving are guilty until they prove otherwise, says a Vancouver defence lawyer specializing in impaired driving. Lawyer Kyla Lee says the proposed legislation must be challenged. "In every case now people are basically going to have to provide persuasive evidence about their drinking pattern and about what their blood alcohol level would be. It’s an incredible burden to put on people," Lee says adding she and co-workers plan to challenge the law’s constitutionality if it passes. If a person...

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Victoria proceeds on tougher drunk driving penalties, undaunted by potential challenges

Judicial Challenge coming

VICTORIA — B.C.’s justice minister admits the government’s contentious drunk driving penalties may again be challenged as unconstitutional after proposed changes this week. New legislation will make it mandatory for repeat offenders to be referred to remedial programs, including the ignition interlock system that requires a person to blow into a breathalyzer before a vehicle starts. “Yes, it may very well be challenged,” Justice Minister Suzanne Anton said Tuesday of the changes. Vancouver lawyer Paul Doroshenko, who has spearheaded past legal challenges to the law, said he thinks government is trying to eliminate the review process for immediate roadside prohibitions. “This changes the landscape...

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Probe of Abbotsford police officers puts cases in jeopardy

Abbotsford Police have been riding dirty

B.C.’s police complaint commissioner has reviewed hundreds of Abbotsford police search warrants and found problems that could put at least 43 cases in jeopardy. Paul Doroshenko, a defence lawyer, said he has already written a letter to representatives of the Public Prosecution Service of Canada, asking for information on which cases may have been impacted. “Public confidence and our ability to defend our clients and people’s ability to deal with this comes down to us knowing who the police officers are. If we should be putting something on hold, we need to know,” he said in an interview. Read more:

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Accused Abbotsford police officers’ investigations could be re-opened

Paul Doroshenko seeks the truth

The massive investigation into corruption at the Abbotsford Police Department has cast a dark shadow on investigations done by the accused officers. Some lawyers, such as Paul Doroshenko, have already begun checking if any evidence that was used against his clients came from one of the search warrants that are now part of the investigation. "Right now I can tell you, not just myself, but other lawyers across the Lower Mainland that are dealing with cases from Abbotsford are probably looking very closely at the information police have reported in files they have outstanding, and probably cases that go back a few...

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Criminal lawyer Sarah Leamon on Boston bombing jury selection

Your browser does not support frames. Click here to view the frameless video.. Mon, Jan 5 – Jury selection is now underway in the trial of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Jurors will be picked from a pool of thousands. They will decide whether Tsarnaev planned and carried out the bombings that killed three people and injured more than 250 others. We chat with BC criminal lawyer Sarah Leamon about the case....

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Supreme Court to review BC’s drinking and driving laws

IRP lawyer goes to Ottawa

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – There’s been a significant development regarding BC’s tough drinking and driving laws. They will be scrutinized by Canada’s highest court as several people have filed a challenge. Lawyer Kyla Lee says whatever happens, things will likely change, adding the Supreme Court of Canada will essentially decide whether the laws are constitutional and will lay out just how far the government can go to use the results of a roadside breathalyzer to punish a driver. “We’re talking about probably 75,000 people who have been caught under these laws, so it’s a huge sector of the population in BC that’s going...

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New breathalyzers coming to New Westminster, but familiar problems persist

FST coming to New Westminster Police

The New Westminster Police are rolling out a new breathalyzer that’s new to British Columbia. It’s called the Alco Sensor FST, and New Westminster is the first police force in B.C. to purchase them. Criminal lawyer Paul Doroshenko says the current breathalyzers being used are a “25 year old technology.” Still, the new technology isn’t perfect either. “It’s got a lot of the same problems as the old one,” says Doroshenko. “It can’t distinguish whether it’s alcohol from your mouth or your lungs, if you’ve been smoking and you blow into it, it will damage the device, and if you burp, you will still...

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