section 520(8)

INTRODUCTION AND BRIEF DESCRIPTION

A person cannot make another bail application for the same accused without the judges permission for 30 days after the previous decision.

SECTION WORDING

520(8) Where an application under this section or section 521 has been heard, a further or other application under this section or section 521 shall not be made with respect to that same accused, except with leave of a judge, prior to the expiration of thirty days from the date of the decision of the judge who heard the previous application.

EXPLANATION

Section 520(8) of the Criminal Code of Canada is a provision that aims to promote efficiency in the judicial process by limiting the number of applications that can be made in relation to a single accused. This provision states that where an application has already been heard with respect to an accused person under this section or section 521 of the Criminal Code, no further or other application can be made without the leave of a judge, until at least 30 days have elapsed from the date of the decision of the previous application. This provision applies to applications made under section 520 of the Criminal Code, which deals with the release of an accused person pending trial or disposition of the charge, and section 521, which deals with the variation, revocation, or reinstatement of a release order. The purpose of this provision is to prevent the abuse of process by an accused person, who may seek successive applications for release or variation of release in an attempt to evade the legal process or to cause delays. In practical terms, this provision means that an accused must wait at least 30 days from the date of the previous application before making another application for release or variation of release. This requirement ensures that the judiciary is not inundated with repeated or frivolous applications, and that the legal process is not unduly delayed by an accused person who may be seeking to gain an unfair advantage. In summary, section 520(8) of the Criminal Code of Canada is a provision that imposes a time limit on applications for release or variation of release, in order to promote efficiency in the legal process and prevent abuse of process by an accused person.

COMMENTARY

Section 520(8) of the Criminal Code of Canada plays an important role in ensuring that the legal process is followed efficiently and effectively while protecting the rights of the accused. This section creates a limitation on the number of times an accused individual may apply for bail or review their bail conditions, thereby avoiding an excessive use of resources by the justice system. The provision stipulates that after an application for bail or review of bail conditions has been heard, a further application may only be made with leave of a judge, and not before a period of thirty days has elapsed from the date of the previous hearing. In this way, this section helps to ensure that applications for bail or variation of bail conditions are not made frivolously, resulting in a continuous cycle of repetitive legal proceedings which would ultimately consume considerable amounts of judicial resources. Moreover, this provision serves the purpose of providing finality and certainty in the bail or release process, by requiring that unless there are important and compelling reasons, the accused must wait for a specified period before making another application for bail or variation of their bail conditions. This helps to prevent the unnecessary disruption of the judicial process while also protecting the rights of the accused. However, it is important to ensure that this limitation does not unfairly restrict the rights of the accused. In some cases, the circumstances of the accused may change significantly within the thirty-day period, necessitating an earlier application for bail or variation of bail conditions. In such situations, it would be necessary to allow the accused to make a further application before the expiry of the thirty-day waiting period. Therefore, it is essential that the right to make another application before the expiry of the thirty-day period is balanced against the need to ensure finality and certainty in the bail or release process, as well as efficiency in the administration of justice. In conclusion, Section 520(8) of the Canadian Criminal Code provides an important mechanism for regulating the bail or release process in a manner that is efficient, effective, and fair to all parties. By imposing a limitation on the number of times an accused may apply for bail or variation of bail conditions, this provision ensures that the judicial process is not unduly burdened by excessive legal proceedings while safeguarding the rights of the accused. However, care must be taken to ensure that this provision is not applied in such a way as to unfairly restrict the rights of the accused, and that it remains flexible enough to accommodate changes in circumstances that may arise.

STRATEGY

Section 520(8) of the Criminal Code of Canada sets out a requirement for individuals seeking bail to obtain leave from a judge prior to making a further application for bail with respect to the same accused. This provision is a crucial aspect of the bail hearing process, and it sits at the intersection of multiple strategic considerations that impact how criminal lawyers manage their clients' cases. One of the primary strategic considerations that criminal defense lawyers must grapple with is the timing of when to bring a bail application. There are often various factors that influence this decision, including the strength of the Crown's case, the severity of the charges, and the defendant's personal circumstances. For example, if the Crown's case is weak, a defense lawyer may choose to wait to make a bail application until after additional disclosure has been provided or a preliminary hearing has taken place. Conversely, if the charges are serious, or if there is a likelihood that the accused will be sentenced to a lengthy prison term, the defense lawyer may choose to bring a bail application as soon as possible to minimize the amount of time that their client spends in custody. Another strategic consideration is the framing of the bail application itself. This involves deciding which arguments to raise and which evidence to present to the court. To be successful, the defense team must demonstrate that the accused is not a flight risk and that they will appear in court as required. Depending on the circumstances, this may involve presenting evidence of the accused's ties to the community, such as family, employment, or property ownership. Alternatively, it may involve introducing conditions or sureties that the accused is willing to abide by to satisfy the court that they are not a risk to flee. A third strategic consideration is the decision whether to appeal the decision of the judge who heard the initial bail application. Section 520(8) imposes a mandatory waiting period of 30 days before another bail application can be made with respect to the same accused, except with leave of a judge. If a bail application is unsuccessful, the defense team must decide if they should accept the outcome or if they should appeal the decision. Depending on the circumstances, the latter may involve convincing the appellate court that there was a clear error by the judge who made the initial decision. Overall, navigating Section 520(8) of the Criminal Code requires a strategic and thoughtful approach to bail hearing management. Criminal defense lawyers must consider multiple factors, including the timing of the application, the framing of the arguments and evidence, and the potential to appeal the decision if necessary. By carefully considering these factors, criminal defense lawyers can increase the likelihood of successfully obtaining bail for their clients, while also ensuring that they maintain strong relationships with the courts and other key stakeholders in the criminal justice system.