Canadian justice in lawyers’ hands

Justice depends upon financial ability to hire good legal team

Re: Rioters will face little punishment (Letters, April 13)

Congratulations to E.W. Bopp on his letter describing the continuing toothlessness of Canada’s justice system, comparing treatment of rioters in Vancouver with those in London, England.

I have also read similar sentiments in several other recent publications.

From all of these writings, it is my very clear impression that the full force of the law is increasingly viewed as an expensive joke under the present Canadian system.

Justice depends entirely upon the pocketbook ability to hire a “good” lawyer.

In fact, the whole idea of discovering the guilt (or innocence) of the accused has been replaced by the game of “win the case.”

To this end, there appears to be an emerging pattern of beginning defence: “Your Honour, my client was under the influence of substance,” “my client was off his medication,” “my client’s rights have been abused/breached under Section X of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms,” “the law is unconstitutional,” etc.

In at least one comment I have heard, there is to be at least one change in Canada’s court system. To wit, a graded series of prizes for offenders beating the rap. Could this be true?

Perhaps when offenders “whack” their own kind (gang/turf warfare) with no damage to innocents, why involve expensive “due process?”

Have they not done decent society a favour? Perhaps even a citation is warranted.

(Does not a surgeon remove dangerous tissue to save the patient?)

I’ve heard the criminals’ justice system works. Perhaps our criminal justice system should also consider accountability, in addition to rights.

Stephen Lamb

Victoria