Public Health Act prosecution against 4 individuals and one corporation. S 11(b) application. Total delay was 6 days under the 18-month presumptive ceiling.
Held: s 11(b) violation; stay entered.
Defence took reasonable steps to expedite proceedings. Complexity was at the low end of the spectrum, and any complexity arising from the large number of counts was within Crown control. Delay resulted from late disclosure on the eve of the first trial resulting in an adjournment. Case took markedly longer than it should have: “Eighteen months might define where the onus lies but the objective of Jordan is not to give blessing to delay as long as it can be fit into the eighteen month window… It is important for all parties to avoid falling into the trap of inadvertently turning the eighteen month ceiling into a target, which could have the unintended consequence of increasing rather than decreasing delay.”
P. Moreau – Defence Counsel