News Items Index Home 2009/01/06 Article
"Incorrect prohibition order results in no conviction"

By Kenneth W. Golish

A Crown prosecutor withdrew a charge of driving while disqualified before Justice G. DeMarco of the Ontario Court of Justice in a Windsor court today.  In 2006, on a conviction for impaired driving, the defendant signed a standard driving prohibition order.  He was before the court for a 2007 allegation of driving while prohibited under s. 259 of the Criminal Code of Canada, a matter that would normally result in a prison term of at least 15 to 30 days.

Defence counsel Kenneth Golish noted that the prohibition order in question suffered from the same defect that caused the Court of Appeal for Ontario in R. v. Molina, 2008 ONCA 212 (CanLII) to declare invalid a number of convictions for the same charge.  That case stood for the proposition that where a court order binds an offender and where an individual must be informed of a set of statutory provisions, absent other evidence, a signed document that does not clearly demonstrate compliance with the applicable notice requirement will not be saved by a presumption of regularity.  Defence counsel noted a different form is now in use in the region, but the form was only revised as of December, 2008.