Murder trial. Aboriginal accused. No aboriginal persons were part of the jury array. Constitutional challenge to s. 4(h) of the Jury Act which prohibits individuals with criminal records from being eligible to serve on a jury.

Held: Application dismissed.

As per Kokopenace [2015] SCJ No. 28: “There is no right to a jury roll of a particular composition, nor to one that proportionately represents all the diverse groups in Canadian society.” A jury roll is “representative” provided that the state “has not deliberately excluded members of a particular group.” Exclusion of individuals with criminal records is reasonable. “The disproportionate effect of the impugned exclusion in the case of indigenous Canadians points to a shameful feature of modern Canadian society, but it does not cause a jury … to be unrepresentative.”

J. Renouf, A. Badari –

Defence Counsel