Drug Offences

The Controlled Drugs and Substances Act states that no one shall possess a substance that is listed in the Act. The Act lists a large variety of banned substances including opium, heroin, methadone, cocaine, codeine, oxycodone, morphine, PCP or “angel dust”, Psilocybin or “magic mushrooms”, LSD, and all forms of cannabis, including marijuana, hashish and their oils. Some substances are completely banned, while others are listed as only available under certain limited conditions such as a doctor’s prescription.

Personal possession means possessing a drug on your person or in your immediate vicinity. The offence of possession may be laid where a police officer finds a person with a small quantity of a prohibited drug and the arresting police officer believes that the accused had this drug for personal consumption. The Crown Prosecutor will be required to prove the following elements of the offence:

  • That you had physical possession or custody of the prohibited drug;
  • That you knew that you physically possessed the prohibited drug;
  • That you intended to possess the drug;
  • That the drug is a prohibited drug under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act

You may also be charged if you knew someone had illegal drugs and gave your consent and exercised control over the drug in some way. For example, if you lived in a home for 2 weeks with a friend and you knew and consented to the fact that he was keeping prohibited narcotics in the bathroom, you could be charged with constructive possession if the drugs were discovered. Thus, even though you did not have physical or personal possession of the drugs, due to the fact that you knew about them, consented to them being there or could have controlled them being there, you will be found guilty of the offence. Similarly, if you are driving a friend who has drugs in their possession, you may be charged with joint possession if it is determined that you were aware of and consented to the drugs being in the car. The Court will infer that you had control over the drugs as well since you could have denied your friend entry into your vehicle if he refused to get rid of the drugs.

The penalties for possession of a controlled substance can be very serious. The Controlled Drugs and Substances Act provides for penalties that vary with the type and amount of drug possessed. It is not legal to possess any amount of any substance prohibited under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, even so-called “soft” drugs like marijuana. Possession of marijuana up to 30 grams or hashish up to 1 gram is a summary conviction offence that carries a penalty of 6 months imprisonment or $1,000 fine or both. A second offence may result in up to 1-year imprisonment or $2,000 fine or both.

In most other cases, the Crown has the option of proceeding by indictment or by summary conviction. Indictable offences carry larger maximum penalties. For example, possession of Amphetamines, LSD, mescaline or psilocybin carries a maximum sentence of 3 years imprisonment. Possession of cocaine or heroin carries a maximum penalty of imprisonment for 7 years on an indictable prosecution. Possession of marijuana and hashish if prosecuted as an indictable offence could lead to a maximum of close to 5 years in prison. A conviction for any drug possession offence, even marijuana, will most likely prevent you from being granted entry into other countries, particularly the United States.

A more serious charge under the Act is trafficking in or possessing for the purposes of trafficking any controlled substance under the Act. This charge is usually laid when a person has some equipment, such as weigh scales or plastic bags generally associated with the distribution or sale of drugs, or is found with a quantity too large to be reasonably considered personal use. To get a conviction, the Crown prosecutor must prove two essential elements. First, it must be demonstrated that you trafficked in the substance or that you offered to traffic in the substance. Second, the drug or substance must fall within one of the prohibited categories stated in the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. If you sell, administer, give, transfer, transport, send or deliver the substance, sell an authorization to obtain the substance such as a doctor’s prescription or offer to do any of these things, you could be charged with trafficking in controlled substances. There does not have to be an exchange of money for drugs in order for it to be considered trafficking. Even passing a marijuana joint or buying drugs to give to a friend can meet the definition of trafficking under the Act.

Penalties for trafficking or possession for the purposes of trafficking are serious. Depending on the drug type and amount, the sentence can range from 18 months or a $2,000 fine or both to life imprisonment. For example, marijuana trafficking or possession for the purposes of trafficking may be 5 years less a day for amounts under 30 kilograms and life imprisonment for any amount over 30 kilograms. Trafficking in cocaine or heroin is almost always punishable by imprisonment for two years or more. You may also face life imprisonment if you traffic over 30 kilograms of heroin or cocaine. Importing Trafficking LSD could yield a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.

Other offences under the Act include importing and exporting drugs, cultivating marijuana, and producing any other illegal drugs as defined by the Act. The offences have varied penalties depending on the type of drug involved. For example, cultivation of marijuana may be up to 7 years imprisonment and production of other drugs can be up to life imprisonment. The production of drugs is the manufacturing, synthesizing or altering the physical or chemical properties of a substance, the cultivating, propagating or harvesting of a substance or any living thing from which the substance may be extracted or otherwise obtained.

If you have been charged with a drug offence, you should consult with a lawyer immediately.

Find The Best White Collar Fraud Lawyer in Burlington

Once a niche practice developed by only some law firms, white-collar defense has become a core practice with national and international scope at most large American law firms. Over the last 15 years, white-collar defense has grown to respond to the globalization of both American and foreign corporations, the expansion of government oversight of businesses in the U.S. and abroad, and the numerous financial scandals that have erupted over the same period.

“White-collar defense” captures a broad set of substantive areas of the law, all of them arising from the myriad ways that local, state, federal, and foreign governments regulate businesses and entrepreneurs — what they say to investors and the general public about their own successes and failures (securities law); how they compete with one another (antitrust law); how they win business, deliver services, and seek payment when governments are themselves the customers (False Claims Act, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act); how businesses treat the environment; and whether they comply with general laws against theft, fraud, bribery, tax evasion and corruption. Public officials must navigate similar rules and thus present similar types of issues included under the broad category of white-collar defense.

White collar crime attorneys focus on clients that have been charged with a non-violent crime related to their businesses or financial operations.

This often includes money laundering, securities fraud, embezzlement, insider trading, tax evasion, price-fixing, and health care fraud.

White collar criminal lawyers work to refute or reduce the charges brought against an individual and have extensive knowledge of the business regulation and practices as well as legal proceedings.

With technological advancements, it is easier to commit a crime and get away with it. Such crimes are known as white collar crimes and, may also be committed with the help of a paper or a pen. In most cases, such crimes involve more than one person due to different processes involved. Thus, innocent people who may have aided criminal activity unknowingly might find themselves as a target during investigations. These crimes need the expertise of a White Collar Fraud Lawyer Burlington to buy the freedom and rights of the accused.

Over the past few decades, there has been an increase in the number of fraud cases in major governmental organizations. As a result, the number of victims and suspects rose drastically leaving several people spending most of their lives in Jail. White Collar Fraud Lawyer devised several ways of trying to assists these individuals by contesting their crimes in court. In the process, several of the detained clients secured their freedom while the government was left with a task of searching for the real culprits.

White Collar Fraud crimes are heard in either superior court or the district court. Crimes handled by White Collar Fraud Lawyer Burlington include:

  • Embezzlement
  • Forgery
  • Bribery
  • Fraud – these may include a presentation of false records, knowingly misinterpretation of vehicle mileage and fraudulent health claims.
  • Tax Evasion/Tax Fraud
  • Securities Frauds- this is an illegal sale, purchase or offering of securities that can result in a jail exceeding 25 years.
  • Money Laundering
  • Insider Trading
  • Environmental Crimes
  • Copyright infringement and Video Piracy

Possible Penalties for White Collar Fraud Crimes.

Penalties of the named crimes may include, or a combination of:

  • Fines
  • Imprisonment
  • Community Services
  • Probation
  • Disgorgement
  • Restitution
  • Home Detention
  • Forfeitures
  • Cost of Prosecution

Some possible defense tactics to be applied by White Collar Fraud  accused persons.

The ideal way to handle such cases is by contacting a qualified Fraud and White Collar Attorney Burlington who will aggressively represent the accused.

The Lawyer is in a position to challenge the prosecution and eliminate chances of:

  • Restitution
  • Claims for Damages
  • Forfeiture

Making a statement in the absence of an attorney can jeopardize one’s life. An accused should always consult an attorney before giving any information to the investigators. Thus, this makes it easier in the gathering of evidence needed to undermine prosecution case against an accused.

Murder, Manslaughter or Infanticide – Culpable Homicide Under Canadian Law

In Canada, criminally blameworthy homicide is either murder, manslaughter or infanticide. Homicide that does not fit into one of these categories is not a crime.

Infanticide occurs when a female person causes the death of her newly born child when her mind is disturbed as a result of the effects of giving birth.

The maximum sentence for infanticide is five years in jail. There is no minimum sentence.

Manslaughter occurs when a person causes the death of another by means of an unlawful act but did not intend to kill the victim. A classic example of manslaughter is the scenario of a punch causing the victim to fall down striking his or her head on a curb, the latter impact causing death. There is an unlawful act, the assault, but no intention to cause death.

In certain circumstances, manslaughter can be found when deliberately fatal blows are inflicted as a result of a physical or mental shock to one’s system. In Canadian law, this concept is known as provocation. Legal provocation can reduce what might otherwise be the crime of murder to manslaughter.

In rare circumstances, the crime of murder can be reduced to manslaughter if the consumption of alcohol or other intoxicants has affected the mental processes of the perpetrator.

As a very general statement, it is correct to say that all criminally blameworthy homicide that does not constitute murder, is manslaughter. This broad concept may capture fact situations other than those discussed above under this heading.

The maximum sentence for manslaughter is life in prison. Unless a firearm is involved, there is no minimum sentence.

Murder occurs when a person intentionally causes the death of another or intentionally inflicts bodily harm that he or she knows is likely to cause death and is not acting in the course of self defence or the defence of another as defined by law. Murder may be either first degree murder or second degree murder.

First degree murder occurs in the following circumstances:

  •  If the murder is planned and deliberate;
  •  If the victim is a peace officer or prison guard;
  •  If the murder is caused in the course of a hijacking, sexual assault or kidnapping;
  •  If the murder is caused in the course of criminally harassing another (for example, stalking);
  • If the murder is caused in the course of terrorist activity;
  •  If the murder is caused as part of the activities of a criminal organization;
  •  If the murder is caused in the course of intimidating a group of persons or the general public, in order to impede the administration of justice, in the course of intimidating a justice system participant or in the course of intimidating a journalist for the purpose of attempting to dissuade that journalist from disseminating information about a criminal organization;
  •  Any murder, if the perpetrator has previously been convicted of murder.


Second degree murder is all murder that is not first degree murder. Generally speaking, second degree murder is a deliberate killing that occurs without planning and does not involve any of the victims or circumstances listed above under first degree murder.

The sentence for second degree murder is life imprisonment with no parole for a least ten years or any such higher number between then and twenty five years, as decided by a judge (different sentencing rules exist for persons under the age of 18 years)