Appeal from conviction on various charges including extortion. Primary issue related to competence of trial counsel. Counsel was subject to pending law society discipline, but was permitted to continue with conducting the trial, given (in part) to the accused’s express instructions to have him remain as his counsel.
Held: Appeal dismissed.
The appellant insisted on his choice of counsel. “Having resisted attempts to disqualify his counsel, the convicted appellant is not entitled to a second trial to see if a different tactic will work better … The standard of counsel competence to which an accused is entitled is grounded in results: was there a miscarriage of justice resulting from procedural unfairness or lack of ‘reliability of the trial’s result’ brought about by a level of representation that was below reasonable professional judgment.” Test not met. Berger, JA dissented, finding that trial counsel was incompetent.
D. Knisely – Defence Counsel