INTRODUCTION AND BRIEF DESCRIPTION
667(3) An accused against whom a certificate issued under subparagraph (1)(a)(iii) or paragraph (1)(c) is produced may, with leave of the court, require the attendance of the person who signed the certificate for the purposes of cross-examination.
Section 667(3) of the Criminal Code of Canada deals with the production and admissibility of certificates in criminal proceedings. Under this section, an accused against whom a certificate has been issued relating to the mental state or competency of a witness may request the presence of the person who signed the certificate for cross-examination. Certificates are often used in criminal cases to establish the mental state of a witness or accused person. For example, a certificate may be issued by a medical professional attesting to the mental competency of a witness or the accused. It may also be issued by a handwriting expert, forensic scientist, or other specialist in a particular area of knowledge related to the case. Certificates are considered to be evidence in criminal proceedings and can be relied upon by the court in making its decision. However, an accused person has the right to challenge the certificate by cross-examining the person who signed it. To do so, the accused must first seek leave of the court, which means requesting permission to cross-examine the person who signed the certificate. If leave is granted, the accused can then question the person in court on matters related to the certificate and challenge their evidence. Section 667(3) is an important provision in ensuring that evidence presented in criminal proceedings is reliable and subject to rigorous scrutiny. It also helps to protect the rights of the accused by allowing them to challenge the evidence against them and ensure a fair trial.
Section 667(3) of the Criminal Code of Canada is an important provision that safeguards the rights of accused persons in Canadian criminal trials. This provision pertains to the rules around the issuance and production of certificates by certain professionals, including medical professionals and police officers, in criminal trials. If a certificate is produced under subparagraph (1)(a)(iii) or paragraph (1)(c), an accused person may apply to the court for leave to cross-examine the person who signed the certificate. Subparagraph (1)(a)(iii) concerns certificates signed by a medical practitioner regarding an accused person's fitness to stand trial or mental state at the time of the alleged offence. Paragraph (1)(c) concerns certificates signed by a peace officer regarding the identity, custody, or handling of physical evidence. The purpose of this provision is to ensure that accused persons have the opportunity to challenge the evidence brought against them, including certificates issued by professionals. It recognizes the importance of cross-examination as a cornerstone of the adversarial criminal justice system. Cross-examination allows the accused to challenge the credibility, reliability, and accuracy of the evidence presented by the prosecution. This is crucial to ensuring a fair and just trial. The application for leave to cross-examine is at the discretion of the court. The court will consider various factors, such as the relevance of the evidence, the potential prejudice to the administration of justice, and the interests of the accused and the prosecution. The accused must demonstrate that the evidence contained in the certificate is of material significance to the case and cannot be adequately challenged by other means. This provision is a safeguard against the potential misuse of certificates by professionals. It recognizes that certificate evidence is not infallible and may be subject to challenge. It also recognizes the importance of transparency and accountability in the criminal justice system. The ability to cross-examine the person who signed the certificate allows the accused to challenge the validity of the evidence and ensure that all the facts are presented to the court. Overall, Section 667(3) of the Criminal Code of Canada plays a crucial role in protecting the rights of accused persons and upholding the principles of fairness and justice in the criminal justice system. It ensures that all evidence brought against an accused is subject to challenge and scrutiny, and that the accused is given a fair opportunity to defend themselves. This provision is a testament to Canada's commitment to upholding the rule of law and ensuring that all individuals receive a fair trial.
Section 667(3) of the Criminal Code of Canada provides an accused person with the right to cross-examine the person who signed a certificate produced under subparagraph (1)(a)(iii) or paragraph (1)(c). This provision serves to safeguard an accused person's right to a fair trial by ensuring that evidence presented against them is properly tested through cross-examination. However, this right can also give rise to strategic considerations and potential tactics that can be employed by the accused. One important consideration is whether to seek leave of the court to require the attendance of the certifying person for cross-examination. This decision will depend on various factors, such as the nature of the evidence presented in the certificate, the strength of the prosecution's case, and the possible risks and benefits of cross-examination. If the evidence presented in the certificate is weak and not critical to the prosecution's case, it may not be necessary or desirable to seek cross-examination. Conversely, if the evidence is strong and potentially damaging, cross-examination may be critical to challenging its accuracy or reliability. Another strategic consideration is how to conduct the cross-examination. An accused's legal counsel may choose to adopt an aggressive or assertive approach, seeking to undermine the certifying person's credibility or cast doubt on the reliability of the evidence they presented. Alternatively, a more conciliatory approach may be taken in an attempt to elicit information that could be favourable to the accused's case. The choice of approach will depend on the specific facts of the case and the strengths and weaknesses of the accused's position. Timing is also an important consideration. Leave must be sought from the court to require the attendance of the certifying person, and this request must be made promptly after the certificate is produced. Delaying the request could be interpreted as a lack of interest in the evidence or an attempt to build a tactic around not cross-examining the person who signed the certificate. Finally, it is important to consider the implications of cross-examination on the accused's overall case strategy. If the goal is to minimize the strength of the prosecution's case, a potentially strong cross-examination may be desirable. However, if the accused has other options to challenge the evidence presented in the certificate, such as by calling their own expert witness or presenting alternative evidence, a decision may be made as to whether or not to present a cross-examination. In conclusion, Section 667(3) of the Criminal Code provides an accused person with a valuable right to cross-examine the person who signed a certificate presented against them. The strategic considerations discussed above illustrate that careful planning and tactics are needed to make best use of this right. By understanding the potential advantages and risks of cross-examination, an accused party can make an informed decision about whether to request it, and how to conduct it effectively.