The prosecutor is counsel assigned to the case by the government. Most prosecutors are employed under the Attorney General of the province. For example, if you’ve been charged with assault activity in Edmonton, you will be prosecuted under the Province of Alberta. The prosecutor reviews the information received from the police and decide whether to prosecute based on that information. They must decide whether there is a reasonable likelihood of conviction and if it is in the public interest to proceed. In making that decision, the Crown reviews whether or not the evidence is sufficient and reliable to withstand this threshold. It must also be in the interests of justice to proceed with a prosecution.
Although there are different names for prosecutors across Canada: Crown Prosecutors Office, Crown Attorney’s Office, the Director of Public Prosecutions, Public Prosecution Service of Canada. These offices perform the function of prosecuting either offences under the Criminal Code, or Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and all quasi-criminal or regulatory offences.
Typically, the Public Prosecution Service of Canada prosecutes offences contrary to the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act exclusively. One of the first duties of the prosecution is to make a full and timely disclosure of all the evidence gathered in the investigation. This includes evidence favourable to the defence or other evidence that the prosecutor may not enter as part of their case. The Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that the Crown must provide full disclosure to an accused in their criminal trial.
The Crown has a great deal of discretion in a criminal or narcotics charge. There may be circumstances where it is not in the public interest to proceed with charges so they withdraw the charges, call no evidence, or enter a stay of proceedings. They may also take a position in sentencing that is favourable to an accused because of the circumstances of the case or because of the personal circumstances of an accused. The prosecution also has the ability to consent to vary bail conditions at any time with the defence counsel, either informally or in a bail hearing.
For more information related to your prosecution case, contact Rod Gregory, your Defence Lawyer. Rod has years of experience in assault, narcotics, illegal firearms cases and more in Edmonton, Grand Prairie, and the rest of Western Canada.