Accused charged with possession of child pornography. Police obtained a general warrant to search his computer but failed to file a report to a justice, and conducted a broad search of the computer without detailed notes. Issue before the Court of Appeal was whether trial judge erred in finding no s 8 breach.

Held: s 8 violation; evidence not excluded under 24(2).

Principles surrounding computer searches reviewed. There was a technical breach of the appellant’s s 8 rights as the general warrant was issued invalidly: police should have obtained a s 487 warrant. In addition, failure to file a report to a justice under s 489.1 was a further breach: Craig, 2016 BCCA 154; Garcia-Machado, 2015 ONCA 569. However, a lack of search protocols and detailed notes did not violate s 8 of the Charter. On a s 24(2) analysis, the breaches had “little practical impact on the appellant’s informational privacy rights” and the balancing analysis did not favour exclusion. Berger JA concurred in result.

I. McKay / H. Ferg – Defence Counsel