2012 in review – Statistics for our Website

To the CALE Community and Beyond

I thought you might be interested that the WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The new Boeing 787 Dreamliner can carry about 250 passengers. This blog was viewed about 1,800 times in 2012. If it were a Dreamliner, it would take about 7 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Y Taddese: Source of high-flying bankrupt’s legal support privileged, appeal court rules

Fr0m Law Times – original post (with photos) from the Law Times website; click HERE

Monday, 10 December 2012 08:00 | Written by Yamri Taddese

The Ontario Court of Appeal’s decision to uphold the right of a bankrupt Toronto man not to reveal the source of his legal expenses sets the record straight when it comes to solicitor-client privilege, according to his legal counsel.

In a case involving a trustee doubtful of its debtor’s penury, the appeal court set aside a December 2011 ruling that ordered Morris Kaiser, a bankrupt, to identify the person financing his legal matters. Continue reading

A Woolley: The immorality (and morality) of morality-based judging

Posted on December 10, 2012 by Alice Woolley

PDF version  and original posting available on the ABlawg Website : www.ablawg.ca

Case commented on: R v Zentner, 2012 ABCA 332


On November 22, 2012, in its decision in R v Zentner, 2012 ABCA 332, the Alberta Court of Appeal reversed the sentencing decision of Provincial Court Judge G.K. Krinke, in which Judge Krinke imposed a conditional discharge on a funeral director convicted of fraud.  The Court did so on the grounds that Judge Krinke failed to follow applicable (and binding) precedent and did not comply with the requirements of the Criminal Code.  The Court held that the “legal foundation of the sentence imposed was either non-existent, or was installed upside down” (para 60). Continue reading

A Seymour: Lawyer who posted confidential material caught up in police sting

Published in the Ottawa Citizen, December 6, 2012

By Andrew Seymour

For the original posting, click HERE.

OTTAWA — A criminal defence lawyer became the target of a police sting after  posting what was supposed to be confidential allegations against one of his  clients online.

David Anber took to the web in an attempt to find someone who could help him  read blacked-out portions of disclosure documents provided to him by the Crown  and outlining evidence against his client.

The document also contained the client’s name, picture, date of birth,  employment details and phone and credit card numbers as well as copies of her  driver’s licence, pay slip and a bank account printout. Continue reading

T Gut: Counsel Misconduct before the International Criminal Court

From Hart Publishing

Counsel Misconduct before the International Criminal Court

Professional Responsibility in International Criminal Defence

By: Till Gut

This is the first comprehensive study of the law governing professional misconduct by defence lawyers before the International Criminal Court. The ICC’s regulatory regime was introduced in response to instances of misconduct experienced by other international and domestic criminal courts. The book first turns to how the ICC’s forerunners – the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda and the Special Court for Sierra Leone – coped with misconduct, often resulting in controversy. The book also looks at the approaches that have evolved in Germany and the United States, reflecting the different role of defence lawyers in the civil and common law criminal justice traditions. Continue reading

A Salyzyn: Good Lawyers, Gone Good?

Published on Jotwell, November 27th, 2012|Amy Salyzyn|

Why Good Lawyers Matter (David L. Blaikie,  Honourable Thomas Cromwell and Darrel Pink, eds., 2012).

For the Jotwell webpage, click HERE.

A bad news lawyer story is nothing new. As Deborah Rhode keenly observed over ten years ago: if one listens to the critics, it is easy to get the impression that “lawyers belong to a profession permanently in decline.”1 Current Canadian headlines only affirm Rhode’s observation. On a near-daily basis, we are gloomily advised of a spate of lawyerly crises. Ongoing problems with access to justice, lawyer incivility, lack of diversity and, most recently, shortages in articling (mandatory apprenticeship) positions, all loom large. Reading the newspaper can be demoralizing to newcomers and seasoned practitioners alike. Continue reading

T Corcoran: Time to Free Joe Groia

From the Financial Post, November 21, 2012

By: Terence Corcoran

For the original article on the FP website, including links to related stories, click HERE

The civility movement is an attempt to interfere with free speech in court

For more than three years we have been watching with increasing incredulity the Law Society of Upper Canada’s persecution of Joe Groia, one of Canada’s most successful corporate lawyers. Did I say persecution? It is probably “uncivil” to call it that, although the story of Mr. Groia’s marathon encounter with the Law Society has all the hallmarks of — or, as Toronto Mayor Rob Ford might say, smacks of — systematic and oppressive mistreatment. Continue reading

LSUC: Information for Lawyers Acting for Police Officers in Ontario SIU Investigations

The original document can be accessed on the LSUC website by clicking HERE

Ontario Regulation 283/11, made under the Police Services Act, came into force on August 1, 2011, and amends Ontario Regulation 267/10, Conduct and Duties of Police Officers Respecting Investigations by the Special Investigations Unit. Ontario Regulation 267/10 prohibits subject officers, who are police officers whose conduct appears, in the opinion of the Special Investigations Unit (“SIU”) director, to have caused the death or serious injury under investigation, from being represented by the same legal counsel as witness officers. Witness officers are police officers who, in the opinion of the SIU director, are involved in the incident under investigation but are not subject officers. Section 6 of Ontario Regulation 267/10, as amended, provides that to the extent that it is practicable, the chief of police shall segregate all police officers involved in the incident from each other until after the SIU has completed its interviews, and that “a police officer involved in an incident shall not communicate directly or indirectly with any police officer involved in the same incident concerning their involvement in the incident until after the SIU has completed its interviews” (emphasis added).

To the extent that a lawyer may be jointly retained by two or more subject officers or witness officers, the lawyer should be aware of rule 2.04(6) of the

Rules of Professional Conduct, which addresses joint retainers. The rule provides that where a lawyer accepts employment from more than one client in a matter, the lawyer shall advise the clients that: (i) the lawyer has been asked to act for both or all of them; (ii) no information received in connection with the matter from one can be treated as confidential so far as any of the others are concerned; and (iii) if a conflict develops that cannot be resolved, the lawyer cannot continue to act for both or all of them and may have to withdraw completely.1

Lawyers who act for more than one officer with respect to an investigation by the SIU must comply with the requirements of both the joint retainer rule and Ontario Regulation 267/10, as amended. A lawyer retained to act for multiple officers must observe the law and not defeat the purpose of section 6 of Ontario Regulation 267/10 by serving as a conduit between segregated officers jointly represented by the lawyer. Further, the law requires that a lawyer retained to act for multiple officers must not disclose anything, confidential or otherwise, said by one segregated officer to any other segregated officer until the SIU has completed its interviews.

A lawyer who is unable to comply with section 6 of Ontario Regulation 267/10 and the lawyer’s obligations under Rule 2.04(6) would effectively be unable to accept a joint retainer in such circumstances. As the rule requires that a lawyer cannot treat information as confidential as between joint clients and the regulation requires that the police officers not indirectly communicate with each other concerning their involvement in the incident, it is difficult to see how segregated police officers can properly be jointly represented. Lawyers should also review the Ontario Court of Appeal decision in

Schaeffer v. Wood, which discusses issues relevant to the Rules and regulation. The Supreme Court of Canada granted an application for leave to appeal this decision on June 28, 2012.


FN 1. There is a limited exception to this rule for joint retainers in the lending context that is not relevant here.


J Gray: Bre-X lawyer Joe Groia blasts proposed suspension for incivility

The Globe and Mail, Published Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Jeff Gray

Bay Street lawyer Joe Groia, facing up to a four-month suspension for “incivility” during the high-profile Bre-X trial a dozen years ago, argued Tuesday that the sanctions he faces from his profession’s regulating body violate his right to free speech.

In a hearing before a three-member disciplinary panel of the Law Society of Upper Canada, Mr. Groia’s lawyer, Earl Cherniak, argued that the law society’s submissions on the penalty his client should face wrongly single out comments Mr. Groia made criticizing the regulatory body’s recent push to police lawyer behaviour for civility. Continue reading

P Small: Toronto courtroom rudeness

Published in The Star

Peter Small November 20, 2012

Toronto courtroom rudeness: Make ‘uncivil’ lawyer pay $247,000, prosecutor says

A prominent Toronto lawyer found guilty of professional misconduct for uncivil courtroom behavior should be suspended for two to four months and ordered to pay $247,000 in costs, a prosecutor says.

In successfully defending Bre-X Minerals geologist John Felderhof against insider trading charges 12 years ago, Joe Groia engaged in deliberate and pervasive rude behavior, Law Society of Upper Canada prosecutor Tom Curry argued Tuesday. Continue reading