INTRODUCTION AND BRIEF DESCRIPTION
672.18 Where at any time while an assessment order made by a court is in force the prosecutor or an accused shows cause, the court may vary the terms of the order respecting the interim release or detention of the accused in such manner as it considers appropriate in the circumstances.
Section 672.18 of the Criminal Code of Canada outlines the process of varying the terms of an assessment order made by a court. This section specifies that if at any point during the assessment order's enforcement, the prosecutor or the accused can demonstrate cause, the court may modify the order's terms pertaining to the interim release or detention of the accused as they see fit in the given circumstances. The assessment order is characteristically made under section 672.11 of the Criminal Code of Canada, which specifies that the judge may order an assessment of the mental state of the accused individual. An assessment order often means that the accused and their conduct would be closely monitored, and they may be detained until the assessment is concluded. Section 672.18's inclusion in the Criminal Code of Canada is significant because it offers flexibility to the judicial system while ensuring that an accused's interests are consistently protected. It means that even in the execution of the assessment order, the court maintains the power to look at each case's specifics and make adjustments accordingly. This section is especially critical in instances where the accused's mental state is in question. In those circumstances, it emphasizes the importance of ensuring that the individual is not only held accountable but also granted the necessary psychiatric care and treatment. The provision guarantees that the court can evaluate the conditions of an assessment order regularly, ensuring that they remain necessary or whether they need to change to reflect the evolving circumstances. In conclusion, section 672.18 provides an essential provision in the amendment of assessment orders, ensuring fairness and flexibility in the implementation of the Criminal Code of Canada.
Section 672.18 of the Criminal Code of Canada allows the prosecutor or an accused person to show cause to vary the terms of an assessment order made by a court regarding the interim release or detention of the accused. This provision is included in Part XX.1 of the Criminal Code, which deals with Mental Disorder provisions. The purpose of an assessment order is to empower the court to order a psychiatric assessment of an accused person to determine their mental fitness to stand trial. The assessment process can take several weeks or months, and during this period, the accused may be required to remain in custody or be released under certain conditions. However, the circumstances of an accused person can change during the assessment process, and as such, they may require a variation of the assessment order. For example, the accused could develop a mental illness, making them unfit to stand trial and requiring a change in their detainment status. Alternatively, the accused may have learned new information that they didn't have at the earlier stages of the legal process, which may be sufficient to overturn the earlier detention order. Similarly, the prosecution is entitled to seek a variation of the assessment order if they identify new evidence that suggests a danger posed by an accused person who was initially granted bail or conditional release. Such variation could result in revocation of bail or placing more stringent conditions on the release of the accused. The provision is helpful because it allows for flexibility in the administration of justice and accords both parties the chance to seek a modification of the order as a case develops. This provision is instrumental in ensuring that the accused's fundamental rights are protected, and also that the public, and especially the victims, are equally safeguarded. However, it is not appropriate to use a variation of the assessment order as a way of engaging in repeated bail applications. If the accused can make a proper bail application in court, there is no need for them to rely on this provision as an opportunity to seek interim release. Where the accused keeps going back to court with new evidence or claims that could have been made earlier, the court may consider such a scenario as an abuse of the legal process. In conclusion, section 672.18 of the Criminal Code of Canada allows both the prosecution and the defence to show cause and request a variation of an assessment order as required. This provision is helpful because it demonstrates the flexibility of the Canadian legal system in ensuring that justice is administered effectively while protecting the fundamental rights of the accused. It is important to note, however, that the provision should not be used as a way of engaging in repeated bail hearings and must be applied judiciously to serve the interests of justice.
Section 672.18 of the Criminal Code of Canada gives courts the power to modify assessment orders related to the interim release or detention of the accused. This provision gives prosecutors and accused individuals the opportunity to show cause and request a review of the order. To act effectively within this framework, strategic considerations are crucial. The following analysis will explore some strategic considerations and strategies that could be employed in cases involving Section 672.18. The initial strategic consideration is whether to bring a motion for a variation in the order at all. This decision requires assessing the strengths and weaknesses of the case, the potential benefits of variation versus its risks, and assessing whether there is sufficient legal grounds to support a variation. If the decision is made to bring a motion for variation, the next strategic consideration is timing. The parties must decide at what point in the process to bring up the request and whether to do so preemptively or reactively, based on developments in the case. Timing can also significantly affect the outcome of the motion, as a good argument made too early can become irrelevant by the time the court needs to make its decision. On the other hand, raising the issue too late there may be negative consequences, such as the accused spending more time in jail than necessary before being released. Another strategic consideration is the preparation of the evidence needed to support the variation request. Relevant information and documentation should be prepared and presented sensitively and professionally. Whether this evidence is presented at a hearing or in writing, the detail should be sufficient to support the position, while still being succinct. In the case of evidence presented in court, it is also essential to review the rules of evidence, go over appropriate techniques and skills for presenting evidence, and possible tricky questions that might come up during cross-examination. The degree to which the accused cooperates with the process and the prosecution can affect the judge's decision as well. The Crown will be vigilant for any indication of manipulation or obstruction by the accused, and the judge, therefore, needs to be satisfied that the accused can be trusted to comply with any changes made to the assessment order. The accused's behavior, such as their appearance, attitude, demeanor, and cooperativeness with all parties involved, should all be assessed, as these factors can impact the judge's assessment of the accused's suitability for the variation sought. The previous considerations are just a few examples of the many strategic decisions and factors that might apply when dealing with Section 672.18. While the right strategies will depend on the specifics of each case, strategies like cooperation, preparation, and timing are fundamental approaches that are always essential in criminal proceedings. In summary, strategic considerations are critical when dealing with Section 672.18 of the Criminal Code of Canada, and the correct strategies must be employed. We must consider whether to bring a motion for variation and when to do so based on the strongest available evidence. It is also crucial to prepare for evidence and cross-examination and to present evidence and behavior sensitively and professionally. Finally, it is increasingly necessary to guarantee that the accused cooperates with the variation sought. By actively considering these and other strategic considerations, the best possible outcome for the case can be achieved.